The 14u East team competed in five games this weekend, going 1-4. Though the record isn’t where we wanted it to be, the kids competed hard and played throughout the weekend.
We had our first game against the Wallkill Panthers. We started out playing them neck and neck and really didn’t back down. They went on a mini run late to close the half and lead by six. The second half was a different story. We did not come out with the same intensity as the first half and they turned a back and forth game into a 20 point blow out. We did not try and get them into foul trouble by attacking them towards the basket, instead we settled for too many jump shots that just didn’t fall.
In our second game of the day we went up against a very good RAP Memorial team who was a lot bigger than we were. They killed us in transition and we didn’t get back on defense. We got to the foul line a little bit more, but we rebounded poorley and turned the ball over when they pressed us. We kept the game pretty close though and right before the half went on a little run to close the gap. The contiuned to pound the ball inside and just were too much for us to handle.
The third game was the second of back-to-back games which we played the Dream Team from Albany. This was a very good 13u team that was conpeting against the 14u groups. After watching them slip by the 14u West team earlier that morning, I knew that this game was not going to be easy. We came out with some energy and built and early 6 point lead. They turned up the intensity going full court 1-2-1-1 and causeing us to tourn the ball over right underneath their basket. The closed the gap and eventually were tied going into the break at 17-17. What cost us the game was the fact that we let them go right down the middle and the intensity that I saw in the first half was just not there in the second half. We went full court man with about 5 minutes to go and that helped us keep it close, but they got a few more shots to fall then we did and we would fall 41-30. That was our best show on the defensive end all day. Considering we gave up well over 50 points in our first two losses.
Now most teams that lost 3 games yesterday, and were on a current 4 game loosing streak would burried their heads and stop playing. Not these kids. We came out against a smaller Team Primo and were a little sluggish the first 10 minutes. The second unit really picked them up and pushed up to an 8 point lead at the break. Team Primo played us in a tough 3-2 zone that really got after our guards up top. They mad another run, but this time we were able to withstand it and not faulter, like we had done is past game. We played hard and strong and were able to come out with the victory.
In our last game of the weekend, we played probably the best team all weekend in the Orange County Elite. They were big, tall, and athletic. They had guards that could handle the ball and played a 2-3 zone that would trap in corners ans sidelines. We started out sluggish and they jumped right on top of us. Even though I had to leave, due to a time conflict with my 12u team, Coach Moore took over the second half and said the kids played competitive. I want to thank Coach Moore for stepping in!
We had a pretty goo weekend though. The kids learned a lot and I think it will really get us ready for our next tournament. I don;t care about wins and losses, as long as we play hard and attempt to compete I consider that game a success. We need to continue to work on the defensive end to be successful in the win column. Keep up the hard work guys!