Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Game Log 12/5/2006: Junior high

Worked a pair of junior high games today with a partner I had not ever worked with previously. The games went smoothly.

The "Varsity" (9th graders, more or less) game went without a hitch. Red was close for the first half, but Grey blew it open in the first quarter. That's right..."Grey." I kept calling them white...it was really hard to call them "grey." I'll be glad when next year arrives and all home teams are required to wear white. There were really only two situations I remember, both involving whiny players. Red had a player on the bench who barked about a couple of calls a little two loudly. A quick informing of the coach: "Coach, I'm hearing a lot from your bench. Can you control that?" Her response was actually to thank me! I love it when I have a class act on the bench. Then, I had a Red kid say "Shit!" when she dribbled the ball off of her foot and out of bounds. We were far away from anyone else, so I let it go...I don't think anyone but me heard. I was going to chat with her about it, but she was substituted for before I could. Finally, a White player whined on consecutive trips down the floor. She got the full teacher-glare and lecture. "Five, you've complained twice in a row. That's going to stop immediately. Is that clear?" It worked. Her posture straightened up discernibly, and she said "Yes." No more trouble.

The second game came down to the wire. It featured an unprecedented play for me: Red scoring points for White. Plain and simple...inbounded the ball under their own basket after a jump ball as everyone ran down the floor, but the kid took a shot. Swish! I handled it just fine...said "Red ball!" so they could get right back into it.

The junior high "JV" weren't talented, but they were well-coached, and the game motored along. I felt like White was the better team, but in the second half, Red continued to hit some shops, and next thing we knew, it was tight and late. I started getting into it...selling a few calls, getting together with my partner at any times out...it was cool! From about 1:30 left until about :30 left, Red held onto the ball. Blocked shot...out of bounds. White foul. Knocked out of bounds. Jump ball...Red has the arrow. Then there were a couple of changes of possession, and eventually White had the ball with eight seconds left. They took it down the court, and Blue reached in enough to disrupt the dribbler...lost the ball. I called the foul with two and a half seconds left. It was only Red's fourth team foul! White inbounded the ball and got an open three. No good. Game over. Loads of fun. And the wrong-way basket didn't cost Red the game.

THINGS I DID WELL: Game management, took no crap, handled bizarre wrong-team
bucket without a hitch.

THINGS TO WORK ON: I had a walk call I didn't like late. She whiffed on a dribble, the ball wound up over her head, she ran a few paces, and caught the ball. It looked ugly, and right after I blew my whistle...well, I realized it was a no-call.

NEXT UP: Could be a good varsity game tomorrow night. Stoked.


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