July 30, 2011 - Yesterday two D.C. Nike Pro City games graced Georgetown's McDonough Arena. Coverage follows:
Vets get it done - A look at the two benches of Boss Auto and Higher Level drew an obvious conclusion - the former was stacked with veterans, grown men, while the latter had mostly college guys, many of them young. In the end Boss's physicality, experience and depth won out, producing a 65-62 win.
The tide became obvious in the second half when Alvin Brown's Boss big men just came in waves. Center Burgess Williams led them in scoring with 11 points, while Calvin Brown had seven. They all played with some familiarity, which is understandable given many of Boss' players also competed together in EBA play for the Metropolitan All Stars, which Calvin owns; Williams, Brown himself, Terrance Williams and Eric Poole are prime examples of this core.
Alvin Brown on having the likes of Poole, who scored a handful of points, in the lineup: "It's an advantage every time Eric Poole steps on the floor…he's experienced, aggressive and is a solid player across the board".
If youth has an advantage it's in energy and maybe a propensity not to know situations, which in this case was good as despite being down over 10 points in the second half, Higher Level battled back. George Mason incoming freshmen Vaughn Gray led the team and all scorers with 14 points.
He was greatly aided by a veteran though, Mason graduate Jesus Urbina. The South American pro liked the way his team competed, but thought ultimately "We didn't rebound well".
Chalk that up to the experience, physicality and depth, of Boss Auto.
Higher Level (2-4) is all but eliminated from playoff contention, while Boss Auto (3-3) has a sluggers chance of making it.
Hoyas pick it up after the half - Down at the half to Team Turner, DCX needed an injection of energy. The team got it from a pair of players well known to Hoya Land, none other than sophomore point guard Markel Starks and senior center Henry Sims. DCX prevailed 81-66.
Sims, who finished with 15 points, scored 13 of them after intermission, doing it as he does when most effective; Henry remained active. He also rebounded and challenged shooters.
Starks clearly became more aggressive pushing the rock, finishing with 16 points, 15 in the second half. Jamal Olasewere (16 points), a junior forward at Long Island University, on what Markel brings to the table: "When Markel plays as fast as he does, it changed the game…Markel puts the ball where you need it".
Regarding the Blue and Grey duo's energetic impact, Olasewere opined "That helped us big time…it helped push the lead up".
Team Turner, now 4-2 and having slid back into a tie for first in the Hyper Air Division, got 18 points from G'Town junior forward Hollis Thompson, though 12 of those were delivered in the first stanza. Adrian Bowie, a recent Maryland graduate, finished with 17 for the team.
Team Turner's coach, Rodney Turner, lauded DCX, saying "They came back, that's fine", but also looked inward, noting "my point is the (our) decision making" was poor, including throwing up quick three pointers.
DCX (2-4), playing two more times this weekend, has an outside chance of making the playoffs.
Team Turner was without both Mo Diane and Jared Cunningham, who were at the Eurobasket combine in New York. Boss Auto had a similar situation with Elon Bush.
George Mason freshman Eric Coates tweaked his ankle, but given there was no real swelling and he immediately received ice treatment, all should be fine.
Howard sophomore Mike Phillips was hit by teammate Urbina's forearm and cut over the eye, but the injury was nothing serious.
For this weekend's Pro City schedule, click here.