Thursday, January 07, 2010

Game Log 1/7/2010: Another good set o' games

I don't like going to this gym because they put us in the boys' coach's office, and he usually is in there with us. We watch ESPN on his computer. There's really nowhere else to go (it's a very small place), so we just sit around and talk. I don't mind that, but I do NOT like the appearance that I'm hanging out with a coach for an extended period of time. I don't see a way around it, though.

Anyway--boys' and girls' games tonight. The girls' game was pretty smooth. These were very tiny schools (student body of maybe 100-200)--a tiny rural town school coming here to face a tiny religious school in a conference matchup. So there weren't too many skilled kids around. Didn't hear much from anyone, really, until late. With about 45 seconds left, White was down by 4. Green inbounded the ball and White pressed. I waited for the foul. No foul. Just good, stand-up defense in the backcourt. Green passed and dribbled. More good defense. The clock ticked down. Then I heard it from the White assistant coach.


Puh-leeeeez. I normally don't talk to assistants, but when I headed back down the floor with about 10 seconds left, I started to tell him there is no backcourt 10-second rule in the girls' game. He'd obviously been clued in, because before I could speak, he sheepishly said "I know, yeah." White hit a bucket with a couple seconds left, but lost by two.

When I saw the boys' teams, I was worried. Lots of big boys; I was ready for physical play. But each team settled into a zone and stayed there. Made life a LOT easier. Partner said we could have rotated more, but in a zone when the ball is kicked back and forth, I'm not so sure.

Anyway. Two weird calls. One was early in the second half. White went up for a shot, but while the ball was about waist level, Green blocked it. The ball didn't go far, but it popped out of the shooter's hands a little. He gathered it in while he was still in the air, dribbled, and scored an and-one.

White coach shouted for a jump ball. I said "Nope, coach...he lost control." To his credit, the White coach asked me for a explanation later, and accepted it.

Then, there's the When Should You Call The Same Thing At Both Ends question.

Green, who had stayed with White all day, totally fell apart in the fourth quarter, and were down by 18 or so with about 2-3 minutes left. They shot a three and missed. Partner had a call on the knock-the-kid-over-with-his-butt "box-out." The player had landed, so we shot one-and-one.

Coach and crowd were livid. Incorrect, but livid. They couldn't understand why were weren't shooting three shots.

Just my luck, though...About a minute later, White shot a three. And before he landed, Green threw a little forearm his way and made contact.

I may have scowled, since I knew how pissed off the losing team and their fans (who were already playing the "we're getting homered" card even though their team was down by 20 by then) would be. But that's a 3-shot foul.

Green coach was mad, but he made like a Jeopardy contestant and phrased it in the form of a question.

"What's the difference between the play down there and this play?"

I may have shown some annoyance, but I answered his question.

"That player down there had landed. This player had not yet landed."

There was no response. It's nice to be right.

I know that there's a school of thinking that, if similar plays at opposite ends occur, we need to call the same thing. But that feels chicken-poop to me. It's not my goal to be popular; it's my goal to be right...and I was.

I'm noticing an old, bad habit creeping back in...I'm saying stupid crap after I blow the whistle. The only call I want back all night was the first call I made in the boys' game...shooting foul...but not much forearm contact at all, and a helluva lot of ball. Nobody complained, but I didn't care for it. And I showed it, because the first words out of my mouth were anticipating complaints: "That's not all you got!" What the hell is that? SLOW DOWN, dude. Take a beat and you're less likely to say stupid stuff.

Another fine night, though.

THINGS I DID WELL: Coach management, in position, call selection
THINGS TO WORK ON: Slow down, slow down.

Next: Girls JV/Varsity probable blowouts on Tuesday.


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