Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Spiece Run-N-Slam: 15-U division

Nine teams from Michigan participated in the sophomores to be division, of the group three teams advanced into the gold bracket- Common Bond, Camp Daryl, and the Michigan Mustangs, only the Stangs were able to pull off a win in the gold bracket.
Common Bond and The Stangs both entered as #2 seeds, the Stangs dropped their first pool game to the Ohio Basketball Club. All the pregame hype circled around OBC's point guard Stevie Taylor, however the Stangs' Juwan Moody and Brandan Kearney completely shut him down. The problem was the Stangs had no answer for the multiple big men OBC threw at them. The Mustangs were able to bounce back and pick up a pair of 20 point victories over Wisconsin Swing and Team NLP.

Camp Daryl won their pool (with wins over teams from Chicago, Cleveland, and Indiana) to set up a first round match-up with the Mustangs. On paper this game should have been the Stangs with ease but that was not the case. I don't know if the players from the Mustangs over looked Camp Daryl or if CD had a point to prove but CD wouldn't let the mighty Adidas team pull away. Multiple times the Stangs got up by double digits only to have Camp Daryl claw right back into the game. The Mustangs needed a big shot from Percy Gibson to finally close the door.

Sunday morning the Stangs lost a double-overtime battle against All-Ohio Red. All-Ohio pulled down 6-7 workhorse DJ Weatherspoon from their 16-u team and he gave the Mustangs all sorts of problems in the post. The two teams were neck to neck the whole way and you could tell this game had OT written all over it. The Stangs trailed early in the first OT but Kearney knocked down a 3-pointer and Matt Poches hit a pair of free-throws to tie the game. The Stangs had a shot to win it in the first OT but the basket rimmed out forcing the second OT.
Again the teams traded leads, Gibsons' "and 1" play gave the Stangs a one point lead and fouled Weatherspoon out of the contest. Ohio came down and hit consecutive baskets to take a three point lead with less than a minute to play. The Mustangs had a chance to tie the game but turned the ball over giving All-Ohio the win in front of a packed crowd.

In the silver division the Courthouse Kings were able to knock off the family in the first round by one point. The Kings don't have any big time names but they are disciplined and play extremely hard. The win gave the Grand Rapids team a spark as they fought threw the silver division before bowing out in the semi-final to Chicago Express, who went on to win the championship. The Kings now have wins over The Family and the Hurricanes so far this spring.