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High school coaches keep halftime simple
By DEREK SAMSON - The Kansas City Star
Date: 12/28/01 22:15
Andrew Peters remembers a summer basketball camp coach refusing to talk to his team at halftime.
Instead, the coach took a ball to center court and pounded it into the floor continuously for five minutes. Peters, a William Jewell College senior who is working at the Bank Midwest/Holiday Basketball Classic, said the team stared without a reaction.
After all, this was summer camp.
"The crowd and the team sat there in amazement," said Peters, who attended Columbia Rock Bridge High School at the time. "The team never went in the locker room."
Intermissions haven't been that dramatic at the William Jewell tournament, but it doesn't lessen the importance of the halftime speech. It's a tricky balance for coaches, who try motivating and making adjustments all in 10 minutes or less.
Tighten up the press. Don't let the ball into the post. Penetrate the lane. Head fake.
"In terms of `Win one for the Gipper,' you can't do that very often," William Jewell coach Larry Holley said. "Part of it is learning your players, what motivates them, what's going to get them ready to play. It's a challenge each year. Even if you have returning players, the whole chemistry is going to change."
On Friday, halftime speeches focused more on teaching than motivating, and coaches used a variety of methods to deliver their messages. Springfield Glendale coach Steve Hesser was interactive. Truman coach Steve Broughton and William Chrisman coach John Vickers were laid back. O'Hara coach Todd Magwire tried to explain a controversial tactic.
"I like it when a coach tells a player what he's doing wrong and he doesn't beat around the bush," Paseo junior Eric Johnson said. "I like coaches who don't give up at halftime and when we're beating teams bad, they tell us it's not over."
Hesser demonstrated a pick on a player before all the players were in the locker room at halftime of the Glendale-Oak Park game. He asked questions and his team answered in unison. The players were expected to know the answers to these questions.
Players ordered each other to get tough and offered suggestions. The interaction stopped when the coaches left and the players went mute.
At least these mimes listened to their coach. Hesser asked his team for three straight defensive stops at the start of the second half.
Glendale gave him eight. Oak Park didn't score until 3:03 remained in the third quarter, as Glendale opened the second half on a 17-0 run.
Broughton's calm voice never changed, whether he was praising his team for its heart or drawing the press on the chalkboard in Truman's victory over Park Hill.
Vickers also remained at ease during intermission of William Chrisman's loss to Blue Springs, asking his team, "What do you like offensively?"
Peters said players respond better when halftime is more teaching and less shouting.
"It's important that the coaches focus on mistakes that were made and ways to remedy those mistakes," he said. "You always leave halftime on a positive note."
Perhaps the most interesting speech came from Magwire, considering his halftime circumstances. His Celtics had stalled for more than six minutes against Cameron. But Magwire's plan backfired when O'Hara was called for a charge on its last possession and Cameron drilled a last-second three-pointer.
Magwire walked off the court to jeers and boos from the Cameron crowd.
He ignored it and spent halftime boosting the mood of his team. When he had called for the stall in the second quarter, many of his players gave facial expressions like they just chugged year-old milk.
Magwire explained his decision to his players at halftime, telling them that he was trying to draw Cameron out of a zone because he had three starters on the bench.
"Don't think I liked it," Magwire said. "(But) are you going to say, `What's coach doing?' We act like we're getting our (rear ends) kicked. We're in position to win this game."
Halftime speeches also offered a bit of unintentional comedy. Oak Park coach Fred Turner told his team Thursday night it was helping an opposing player look like a Division-I prospect. He mumbled to himself that the player "is a pretty darn good athlete" and immediately appeared to realize he spoke the compliment aloud.
So he followed with a yell.
"Guard him! Geez, have some pride," Turner said. "Toughen up."
The locker rooms varied in size, intensity and communication.
Some teams sat orderly on three rows of benches. Others lounged on couches and fluffy furniture. Players chewed on paper cups and bounced their legs nervously. But, for the most part, the players were just sweaty and silent.
Overall, simplicity seems to be the halftime goal.
"We come up with two or three reminders, and three or four strategies for the second half," Excelsior Springs coach Mike Dryer said. "We may throw in a few words about being aggressive and the traditional things, but it's more of a time to regroup."
Springfield Glendale tops Oak Park in Patterson Division semi
By DEREK PRATER - The Kansas City Star
Date: 12/28/01 22:15
Brandon Kimbrough stole the show -- and the ball, repeatedly -- for Springfield Glendale in a 59-27 smackdown of Oak Park on Friday in a Patterson Division semifinal. Kimbrough led the way on both ends of the court, scoring 22 points and making six steals while Glendale overwhelmed Oak Park with defense. Oak Park committed 26 turnovers, which amounted to a fast-break drill for Glendale. "Our past three games, we haven't played with that much energy," Kimbrough said. "We haven't had a lot of easy baskets, and that's the key to winning games. "Today our defense keyed a lot of easy layups for us." Glendale took advantage of the easy opportunities and made 25 of 49 shots from the field. Kimbrough was nine of 13, including two of three from three-point range. Oak Park's offense, on the other hand, set a tournament record for fewest points in a game. In a stretch during the second and third quarters, Glendale scored 25 straight points. Glendale was particularly hot after halftime when it went on a 17-0 run. "(Ryan) Luethy hits a three right off the start, which gives you confidence and makes your defense a little better, and it snowballed from there," Glendale coach Steve Hesser said. In addition to Kimbrough's scoring and thieving, he also dished out six assists and grabbed five rebounds. Luethy scored 14 points and made two three-point baskets. Oak Park, 3-8, didn't have any player score more than four points. Craig Butler, Brett Hardin and Ben Schirmer all reached that mark, and Hardin also had eight rebounds. Glendale, 10-2, will play Cameron today in the final of the Patterson Division.
Glendale quells Cameron's comeback
With a 16-point lead reduced to two, Springfield Glendale finally decided to make someone other than Tim Blackwell create Cameron's offense.
Nobody did, and that's why Glendale beat Cameron 60-51 for the Patterson Division championship of the Bank Midwest/Holiday Basketball Classic at William Jewell on Saturday.
Blackwell had 22 points on a variety of flashy moves and long jump shots, but was eventually outdone by Glendale's 56 percent shooting and Ryan
Glendale's Kimbrough overwhelms Oak Park
Brandon Kimbrough stole the show - and the ball, repeatedly - for Springfield Glendale in a 59-27 smackdown of Oak Park on Friday in a Patterson Division semifinal.
Kimbrough led the way on both ends of the court, scoring 22 points and making six steals while Glendale overwhelmed Oak Park with defense. Oak Park committed 26 turnovers, which amounted to a fast-break drill for Glendale.
"Our past three games, we haven't played with that much energy," Kimbrough said.
Excelsior Springs falls under pressure
Pressure was Excelsior Springs' undoing Thursday afternoon in their first-round Patterson Division game.
No, it wasn't the pressure of playing in a large college gymnasium on high school basketball's biggest holiday stage in these parts.
It was the defensive pressure applied by Springfield Glendale, pressure that held Excelsior to eight shots in the first half and two points in the second quarter. It was pressure that led to the Tigers' 47-31 loss at William
Price gets chance to play at Hearnes
COLUMBIA - Kenny Price remembers sitting in front of the television set at his Springfield home on Saturday afternoons.
He remembers admiring Norm Stewart, Anthony Peeler, Doug Smith and other Missouri Tigers. He wanted to be a part of it.
Tonight, during a 7 o'clock game at the Hearnes Center, Price gets his chance. Kind of.
``When you're young, you have your visions of what you want to do and where you want to go,'' Price said Tuesday while sitting in a
The Missouri Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association boys high school basketball poll was mislabeled Wednesday in The Kansas City Star. The poll follows.
Class 4A 1. Springfield Glendale 23-3 2. Vashon 21-2 3. Raytown South 23-2 4. Central 22-2 5. Truman 24-2 6. St. Charles West 21-4 7. Rolla 21-4 8. Jefferson City 21-3 9. Hazelwood Central 21-4 10. Hazelwood East 21-4
Glendale knocks off Truman, wins Jewell title game
Every time the Truman boys basketball team got close, Springfield Glendale came back with something big - a basket, a three-pointer or some free throws - and captured a 59-56 victory in the championship game of the William Jewell Holiday tournament Thursday night.
The victory, in the Falcons' first trip to the tournament, gave them a 10-1 record. Truman, the defending champion, is 9-2.