Written by Jaspreet Grewal
Smile Work Basketball’s(SWB) Commitment to Attacking Rim Gets Them the 85-80 Win Over 1 Love T.O
After an eventful first day at Kerr Hall for the OVO Bounce tournament, Tuesday night brought forth an even more zealous ambiance. Game one between SWB and ‘1 Love T.O’ was a barn burner filled with intense and competitive basketball, a seemingly prevalent theme throughout the OVO Bounce tournament
In a game that catered to an enthusiastic audience and entertaining basketball, SWB was able to pull off the 85-80 victory over 1 Love T.O, despite a high scoring night from Antwi Atuahene(25 points).
Miguel Paul was the high man for SWB leading the way with 23 points.
Quarter number one was clustered with crowd-roaring dunks and transition basketball as we witnessed SWB dominate on both ends of the floor. Both Kevin Foster and Dondrick “Cheese” Thomas spoiled the crowd with an array of dunks in the first eight minutes of action – including a collection of fierce one-handers by Foster. Evidently, it was all SWB as they took a 29-15 first quarter lead over 1 Love T.O.
The second quarter didn’t offer much of a difference than quarter number one. Despite a spectacular scoring display from Atuahene it was Paul and company who refused to let up on the gas pedal Tuesday night, seemingly pushing the basketball on almost every possession. Although 1 Love T.O was able to cut into the lead near the latter end of the quarter, they still found themselves down ten, 47-37, going into the second half.
After a somewhat dominant first half by SWB, 1 Love T.O looked to change their fortune in the final 16 minutes. Antwi and and his squad were relentless in their pursuit of paint dominance, where they seemed to find success more often than not. Although SWB maintained their aggressiveness all night- particularly on the offensive end- 1 Love T.O just wouldn’t go away, responding to every run that the men in blue made. In doing so, 1 Love T.O trailed by only seven going into the the fourth quarter.
The final eight minutes of action between the two teams was an all out defensive affair. Although scoring was hard to come by, both teams maintained obedience to their defensive philosophies, particularly in the final five minutes of play.
After exchanging points throughout most of the fourth quarter, it was Foster who iced the game with under a minute left for SWB with a pair of free-throws, preventing a 1 Love T.O comeback.
Not only were emotions on high alert between the two teams, but also with the crowd who, not surprisingly, seemed to never lose interest in the game, even in the early stages when SWB was leading 12-0.
In the end, SWB’s commitment to attacking the paint was the deciding factor in their 85-80 win against 1 Love T.O.
An entertaining series of events to say the least.
Written by Jaspreet Grewal
Johnson, Jennings Lead the Charge in the Win Against ‘401 East
After coming out victorious Monday night against SWB, Team OVO was predetermined to leave Kerr Hall with a win against ‘401 East’ Tuesday night.
Much to their satisfaction, their predetermination aligned fittingly with what took place on the second day of the OVO Bounce tournament.
Behind the defensive prowess of Amir Johnson, coupled with another fantastic scoring output from both Brandon Jennings (20 Pts) and Morgan Lewis (16 Pts), team OVO was able to edge out 401 East in a 76-68 win, negating a 19 point effort from Shamar Coombs.
Jennings was insistent on making quick work of 401 East in the first quarter, hitting on his first two shot attempts from a few feet beyond the arc. Not long after, both Myck Kabongo and Lewis connected on a high-flying alley-oop slam dunk, amplifying an already rampant atmosphere put on by a fervent Toronto audience.
After absorbing an assortment of three pointers, dunks and transition baskets, 401 East were lucky to see themselves down only fourteen, 24-10, at the end of the first quarter. Not necessarily an ideal deficit, but a much better result than what could have happened.
The second quarter, much like the second quarter between SWB and 1 Love T.O, seemed to correspond with the first eight minutes of action in the game where OVO looked visibly dominant on both sides of the floor.
Despite arriving late to the game (literally), Johnson was at it again on the inside, swatting away anything and everything that came within two feet of him. It was easy to see why his shot blocking ability was so condusive to what Team OVO wanted to do, which was to use it as a tool to fuel their transition game.
OVO saw themselves with a comfortable ten point lead, 42-32, going into the final 16 minutes of regulation; a second half that proved to be much more competitive than the first.
The third quarter offered more defense on the part of OVO and more specifically Johnson as he continued to protect the paint at all costs. Johnson was also able to show his versatility throughout the quarter too, connecting on two three pointers early while also displaying a competent driving game, something we don’t see often from the 6’9″ forward. It wasn’t all Johnson on the offensive end for OVO in the third, though, as Lewis was also able to connect on a few outside jumpers in addition to a couple of baseline throw-downs for his team.
Despite a valiant effort from Coombs, who was seemingly unconscious from downtown all night for 401 East, OVO maintained control of the game throughout the quarter and subsequently secured a 12 point lead (59-47) heading into the end of regulation.
The final quarter proved to very different than the previous three quarters for 401 East. Much of the difference could be attributed to Coombs who stuck to his bread and butter (the long distance three) throughout the first 24 minutes and additionally in the fourth.
401 East came out strong in the final quarter as they surprised OVO with a 10-3 run to cut the lead down to five, 62-57. Not only were they able to get going from beyond the arc, but they also elevated their intensity on the defensive end, making it difficult for OVO to get easy opportunities like they did in the first half.
However, after growing tiresome of 401 East’s scoring barrage, OVO decided to bring things back to reality. Johnson was huge in the late stages of the quarter as he swatted away a multitude of layups and inside jumpers to help his squad regain a sizable ten point lead.
After a back and forth affair between the two teams, it became evident that OVO was going to take over in the final minutes of the game, which they did.
In the end, OVO was able to defeat a strong-willed 401 East team 76-68, despite a resilient and courageous comeback attempt.
Written by Brittany Tougher
Team CIA Bounce Sneaks by with a 97-94 victory over the Driven Team #LaserFocused
To finish off the night, Team CIA bounce stacked with Tyler Ennis, Anthony Bennett and Sim Bhullar, played a gritty Team #LaserFocused in an entertaining match between the two squads. The game started slow for Team CIA Bounce, as their shooting was anything but on. Bhullar started off the scoring, slamming one down to motivate the fans in the well-packed gymnasium. Still, the pace was slow for the team and #LaserFocused took advantage in their lack of motivation.
Ennis began showing signs of his great talent last night, driving hard to the basket for an easy two, which then lead Team #LaserFocused to fight even harder against the fresh NBA players of Team CIA Bounce. Alex Johnson was on his A-game for Team #LaserFocused, as he kept them ahead with a generous lead and was continuously part of every play. Both teams were hitting deep threes, playing a back-and-forth style of game. After 2 exciting quarters, the score was 47-41 at half for Team #LaserFocused.
Team #LaserFocused continued their great shooting, nailing a couple threes to start the second half. But CIA Bounce started to pick up the momentum and find their groove, with Bhullar nabbing a few more dunks, and Ennis driving hard to the basket, leading to an and-1 opportunity. The #LaserFocused lead was cut down to one going into the fourth quarter.
The last frame was certainly an entertaining one for the crowd at buzzing Kerr Hall. CIA Bounce snagged the lead with a few minutes to go. Then two inbounding turnovers in a row saw Team #LaserFocused down by two with just seconds to go. Ennis sank two free throws to increase the lead for Team CIA Bounce. But the hustle and grit of Team #LaserFocused never stopped, and again they took advantage of the laid back CIA Bounce. Bhullar making two key plays with a blocked shot and defensive rebound got the ball back into the hands of CIA Bounce. With a failed attempt by Team CIA Bounce, #LaserFocused stormed the front court with 10 seconds as Mike Fraser tipped in his own miss, sending the game into an unexpected overtime period.
Team #LaserFocused still lived up to their name in extra time. They managed to keep a lead through the last four minutes of the game. Although relatively quiet this game, Ennis drained a three pointer to keep his team in the game. With just 28-seconds left, Team #LasedFocused were up by three. However, the talented CIA Bounce squad fought back to force two turnovers including a crucial one by Brandon Ennis, that lead to scoring opportunities for the team. In the end, a heartbroken Team #LaserFocused ended up falling 97-94 to Team CIA Bounce. Both teams were clearly exhausted after the game as they left it all on the floor.
Posted by Drew Ebanks