The defending champion Hoyas took one on the chin and lived to talk about it after defeating the previously undefeated Boys Dem, 78-73, in front of a packed Ronald Charles gymnasium Wednesday night in the final game of the New Breed Basketball Association regular season. Easily the most anticipated contest of the regular season, the teams' performances on Wednesday were well worth the price of admission. They were like two heavyweight fighters standing in the middle of the ring, slugging it out , trying to see who would be first to succumb to the others will. In the end the experience of the four-time defending champion Hoyas proved to be the difference late in the fourth quarter. Both teams came out with a lot of nervous energy and very caught up in the moment. It would take over two minutes for the leagues two most prolific offenses to score a single point. Boys Dem was first on the board, opening with a 5-0 run to the take the early lead. It would take the champs over four minutes to score, and when they did it was on a 13-0 run to grab the lead at 13-5. Boys Dem responded with a 6-3 run to end the first quarter trailing by five at 16-11. Led by Terrel Christians nine points early in the second period, Boys Dem was able to outscore the Hoyas 21-16 to take the lead at 32-31 moments before halftime. However, the Hoyas' Karl Jones was fouled on a made basket and he calmly sank the free throw to give his team a two point-lead at the half, 34-32. In a game of runs, it was Boys Dem turn at the start of the second half as they opened with an 11-2 run to take a seven point lead at 43-36, but back came the Hoyas with a 7-0 run and the game was all squared at 43. The Hoyas found themselves down by four at 53-49 as the third period wound down and they again responded, this time with a 10-1 run to take the lead 59-54 after three bruising quarters. The Hoyas had a scary moment in the third as they and fans alike held their collective breath when their top rebounder and defensive player, Kurt Tennis Man John, went down with an apparent knee injury. John was down for a while writhing in pain. He was eventually able to get up and leave the court, but would return later to be a force to reckon with down the stretch. Just as they did in the third quarter, Boys Dem opened on a run that propelled them into the lead once again. With the majority of the huge crowd cheering them on, they outscored the Hoyas 16-5 to grab a 70-64 lead at the five-minute mark. But, they just could not deliver that knockout blow and led by seven points from Darnell Hendrickson in a 9-0 spurt, the champs stormed back to lead 73-70 with 1:40 left on the game clock. Boys Dem tied the game at 73 on a free throw by Wilson Ferrance and a put-back by Zomari Swanston with 1:25 to go, but that would be the last of their good scoring opportunities because the Hoyas defense would shut them out the rest of the way. On the other hand the Hoyas closed out the game on a 5-0 run to take the game and the number one seed in the playoffs by a score of 78-73. Hendrickson led the Hoyas with a team-high 18 points that included 5 of 5 from the charity stripes. The Hoyas also got 15 points from Karl john and 13 apiece from Kori Vialet and Omari Applewaite, another key Hoya player who had to leave with an elbow injury. Kurt John only scored seven points for the Hoyas offensively but he was a monster on the boards on both ends of the court. The Tennis Man, as he is affectionately called, grabbed a game-high 18 rebounds while swatting away four shots and altering countless others. The man for Boys Dem was Christian who finished with a game-high 21 points and grabbed a team-high 15 boards. Wilson Ferrence was the only other player in double figures as he finished with 15 points in a losing cause.
By Dave Davis July 29, 2010
Jahmiah Simmons Joins A-State Men's Basketball Team - May 17, 2016
JONESBORO, Ark. (5/17/16) - Pace High School (Milton, Fla.) standout Jahmiah Simmons has signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Arkansas State men's basketball program, head coach Grant McCasland announced Tuesday. 'We are excited to have Jahmiah join our A-State basketball program,' said McCasland. 'The first thing that jumps out at you when you see him play is his feel for the game. He can really pass and creates mismatches with his versatility. Jahmiah is a great student and... [read more]
JONESBORO, Ark. (5/17/16) - Pace High School (Milton, Fla.) standout Jahmiah Simmons has signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Arkansas State men's basketball program, head coach Grant McCasland announced Tuesday.
'We are excited to have Jahmiah join our A-State basketball program,' said McCasland. 'The first thing that jumps out at you when you see him play is his feel for the game. He can really pass and creates mismatches with his versatility. Jahmiah is a great student and will be a tremendous teammate. He has international experience at the highest of levels and we feel confident that will translate to our program.'
Simmons, a 6-4 190 pound guard/foward, averaged 15.7 points, 11.3 rebounds and 5.2 assists during his senior season and was named the Pensacola News Journal Player of the Year. He helped the Patriots to the quarterfinals of the Class 6A Regional scoring 23 points in the 62-52 setback to No. 3 Gainesville. He played in the 2016 Pensacola Sports/Subway All-Star Game scoring 17 points, including 11 in the second half, helping the East squad to a 100-91 victory. He finished his prep career at Pace averaging a double-double in all three seasons.
Playing for the U.S. Virgin Islands U17 team, Simmons was voted the best small forward at the FIBA Centrobasket last summer. The squad defeated Mexico in the 2015 FIBA Centrobasket U17 tournament last year to qualify for 2016 FIBA Americas U18 Championships. Simmons scored 13 points and pulled in nine rebounds in the win over Mexico. The silver medal finish was the highest finish in the history of the U.S. Virgin Islands junior national team. Led by A-State assistant Jareem Dowling, the junior national team will compete in the FIBA Tournament of Americas, the second-highest games on the junior level, July 19-25 in Chile.
By Chris Chase @FireChrisChase Thursday night may have marked the end of the 19-year career of two-time NBA MVP, three-time NBA Finals MVP, 10-time first-team All-NBA, 15-time All-Star and five-time NBA champion Tim Duncan (211-F/C-76, college: Wake Forest), whose San Antonio Spurs lost Game 6 of their Western Conference Semifinal against Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder. At 40, it seems likely that Duncan will retire, especially following a year in which he... [read more]
By Chris Chase @FireChrisChase
Thursday night may have marked the end of the 19-year career of two-time NBA MVP, three-time NBA Finals MVP, 10-time first-team All-NBA, 15-time All-Star and five-time NBA champion Tim Duncan (211-F/C-76, college: Wake Forest), whose San Antonio Spurs lost Game 6 of their Western Conference Semifinal against Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder. At 40, it seems likely that Duncan will retire, especially following a year in which he posted career lows in almost every statistical category (even though his Spurs still won a whopping 67 games).
If he does, most basketball eulogies will focus on his time in the NBA - how the can't-miss prospect lived up to expectations and became one of the, if not the best power forward in NBA history. But at occasions like this, sometimes it's just as effective to look back at the man before anyone knew his name, before he was considered one of the greatest basketball players in the world and back to a time when he was just a tall kid living in the Virgin Islands. Tim Duncan had no basketball pedigree. He hadn't touched a ball until he was 14. And he wasn't the subject of an intense recruiting battle having in fact flown under the radar of just about every big-time school in the country.
Duncan was a champion swimmer in St. Croix, where his sister had been an Olympian in 1988. But the following year, when Duncan was a tall, lanky 13-year-old with an eye on the Games in 1992 or 1996, Hurricane Hugo ripped through the island, tearing off roofs, uprooting trees and otherwise leaving the island's main pool useless. All the water surrounding St. Croix didn't help, as swimming in the Caribbean proved fruitless for a number of reasons, namely that swimming in the sea is like playing basketball in a wind tunnel.
Around that time Duncan's beloved mother, Ione, died of cancer. Suddenly finding a place to swim didn't seem as meaningful. After Ione's death, Duncan's sister and her husband, a former D-III player, moved back to St. Croix. It was that husband - Duncan's brother-in-law, Ricky Lowery - who first taught Tim basketball. At 14, he was an age at which most NBA prospects had been playing AAU ball for a half-decade. (Duncan's No. 21 honors Lowery, who wore that number in college.)
Two years later, the U.S. junior team came to the island for some games. The team included Wake Forest senior Chris King, who was asked by his college coach, Dave Odom, whether he'd seen any players worth checking out. King told him of an unpolished, skinny kid who'd held his own with Alonzo Mourning. Odom was on a plane as quickly as you can say "Demon Deacons."
Duncan wasn't entirely unknown. Though he'd been mostly overlooked at an Ohio State basketball camp, word trickled to Rick Barnes at Providence and he and his recruiters went after Duncan hard. But when the team couldn't promise a scholarship until the second part of what would have been Duncan's freshman season, Duncan demurred. Though he'd planned to sign with Providence because they'd been the first team to recruit him, the promise he'd made about getting an education was too important and the guarantee that Wake had given him was too much. He was off to Winston-Salem.
But before he got there, the story of how Tim Duncan and Dave Odom met is classic Duncan - showing his quiet, introverted way while also demonstrating a savvy and complete understanding of the world around him. John Feinstein recounts it in his book, A March to Madness.
Odom flew down to the Virgin Islands and went to the outdoor court where it had been said that Duncan would be playing. The coach sat down and looked in vain for his potential recruit when the teenager showed up next to him instead.
"'Stay calm, Coach," Duncan said. Then he explained the politics of street ball on St. Croix. When the word had gotten around that a big-shot American college coach was in town, everyone who had ever picked up a basketball on the island had shown up to play. Duncan was 16, which made him just about the youngest player on the court. 'If I make them let me play the first game, they'll get upset and put me on a bad team," he said. "I'll lost and I won't get on the court for an hour. If I sit out the first game, though, I can pick my own team and once we got out there, we'll be there for a while.'"
That story caps off with the oft-told five-word line Duncan said to Odom just about as he was set to get on the court. "One more thing, coach," the 16-year-old said, "I can play this game."
Later, Odom would make his pitch to Duncan while the youngster stared at the television the entire time, apparently not listening. But when it came time for Duncan to answer the questions, it was clear he'd been soaking it all in the entire time.
Though Duncan was shut out in his college basketball debut against Division II Alaska Anchorage, he soon blossomed into one of the top players in the country. And despite assurances that he would be the No. 1 pick in both the 1994 and 1995 draft as a sophomore and junior, respectively, Duncan stayed in school for various reasons: a promise to a mother, a love of college and a patience that's served him well in the 20 years since. He'll almost certainly go down as the last top player to pass up being a No. 1 pick (even once) to stay in school another year (not to mention twice). For him, it wasn't even a question. He loved school. He loved his friends. He didn't want to be a 20-year-old traveling 60 nights of the year and hanging out with 30-year-old men. He was all about living in the moment. The money could wait. For Duncan, it all paid off in 1997, when he walked with his diploma, a graduate in psychology at the tiny Winston-Salem school.
Nineteen years later, he may have just graduated again, a 40-year-old man with the rest of his life in front of him. Maybe he'll come back, maybe he won't. But whatever he does, Tim Duncan is going to do it his way.
Arkansas State men's basketball assistant coach Jareem Dowling joined Brad Bobo and Kara Richey on The Drive on KNEA to talk about his path to A-State, his international coaching and recruiting experience, and more. http://www.953theticket.com/?p=14800 Arkansas State men's basketball assistant coach Jareem Dowling joined Randy Myers and Keith Merritt on A-State Nation to talk about his new position with the Red Wolves, his most recent stop at the the Scotland Performance Institute, and... [read more]
Arkansas State men's basketball assistant coach Jareem Dowlingjoined Brad Bobo and Kara Richey on The Drive on KNEA to talk about his path to A-State, his international coaching and recruiting experience, and more.
Arkansas State men's basketball assistant coach Jareem Dowling joined Randy Myers and Keith Merritt on A-State Nation to talk about his new position with the Red Wolves, his most recent stop at the the Scotland Performance Institute, and his time coaching in the Virgin Islands.
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