Monday, February 24, 2014

Highlight Reels Win One, Lose One as Playoffs Near

There was some good and some bad over the past two weeks when it came to Reels basketball.

Lets talk bad news.

The past two games, the Highlight Reels were only able to dress 5 individuals each game.

Against the Winking Lizard, Kyle Komer and Kerry Hunter were out; against Soda Slingers, Komer and Justin Woo were out.  The limited, or nonexistent, subs left the Reels battling themselves on both nights on both ends of the floor.

The lack of subs in the Winking Lizard contest showed especially, where the Reels only managed to score 44 points and shot 26% from everywhere on the floor.  Turnovers, lack of defensive movement, and lack of ball movement told the tale, along with the poor shooting performance from the floor.  Though holding Winking Lizard to 49 points, the good guys could not muster enough energy to push themselves over the road bumps in that contest.

Brandon Hunter had an off night, shooting 4-14 from the floor, averaging the team at 26%.  He did make it to the free throw line seven times, making five.  Justin Woo took 10 shots on night; five three pointers, three two pointers, and two free throws, yet could only connect on one of his shots (from three) for the game.  Chuck Caldwell was 2-10 from three and missed both of his two point attempts. Jason Hunter started to turn his three point shooting around with a 50% night (3-6), but missed all three of his two point attempts.  Andy Kempf had the best percentages and easily the best game of the night scoring 10 points on 4 of 9 shooting and grabbing 17 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season.

The team fell back to .500, though for only one week.

The game against Soda Slingers seemed night and day from a week ago.

The Highlight Reels shot 43% from three point land, 41% from everywhere else, and made 75% of their free throws for a 77-61 routing.

Brandon Hunter had a big turnaround game scoring 26 points and grabbing 8 rebounds.  He was just a tad under 50% from three point range going 6 of 13, making three of six from two, and hitting on both of his free throws.

Jason Hunter continued his short, hot, shooting streak from deep going four of five.  He also made three of his give two point attempts to total 18 points.

The remaining three Highlight Reels scored in double figures as well.

Andy Kempf had another big game on the glass, gobbling up everything in sight for 19 rebounds.  He added another three pointer amongst his 11 points.  Chuck Caldwell added two three pointers of his own in way to 12 points and Kerry Hunter returning from an ailing back grabbed 14 rebounds and scored 10.

The 44 total team rebounds is one of their best showings on the glass in recent weeks and slightly above their yearly team average.  The ball movement was crisp and with purpose most of the game, leading to many open looks not only from three but in fast break layups and cuts under the basket.

With only one game left before the double elimination playoffs in March, the Human Highlight Reels hope to continue their momentum heading into the post season.  The team will hope to dress more than five in the near future when they battle Yuengling this coming Monday at 6:30.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Human Highlight Reels Move to 6-5 After Win

A game that was seemingly closer than it should be, the HHR came away with a 63-54 victory over Thee Money Team.

Money Team came into the matchup with a 2-7 record.

Three point shooting from the opposition kept them in the contest most of the night.  TMT led 15-11 early, after making five three pointers to start the contest.  The Reels held them to only two the rest of the first half which led them to the 36-30 advantage at halftime.

Yet after pushing the lead to double digits toward the middle of the second half, they began to flounder for the second time in two games.  The defense gave up three straight three pointers and the offense came to a stop, giving TMT control of the momentum in the ball game.

A late timeout settled the good guys however as the Reels started to find open baskets and shot a season-high 26 free throws (19/26, 73%), most of them coming late in the contest, to seal the victory.

Although their schedule has been light as of late, the Reels are almost fighting themselves late in ball games.  Hopefully the trend does not continue as the playoff push has begun.

The road however gets a bit tougher next week as the team will face off against Winking Lizard, who was 7-2 as of the latest standings.  Winking Lizard actually leads the entire league in defense, allowing only 389 points in nine games, which is around 43 points per game.


Kempf Reaches 100

A positive to take away from this past weeks game is Andy Kempf, who pulled down his 4th double-double of the season and has eclipsed 100 points for the the season. This is the first time in his career that he has totaled more than 100 points in one season.  His next closest point total came during the Price is Right winter season where he totaled 90 points.

Kempf is averaging career bests* in both points (7.7) and rebound (10.9) this year.

* Kempf did average 13 rebounds in a shortened stint during the Price is Right fall season.


Hunter Reaches 100

For the fourth winter season in a row, Brandon Hunter has reached the 100-mark in rebounds.  Hunter only needs 42 points to also reach his fourth 300 point, 100 rebound season.

Hunter leads the team in scoring at 19.8 points per game and is third in rebounds per game with 8.4, which is a career best on the glass.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Reels Move Back to .500

It may not have been pretty, but the Human Highlight Reels have moved back to playing .500 basketball.

A 60-49 victory over Panini's-Black this past Monday will hopefully get the ball rolling in the right direction for the team; a team that started to show a little consistency on the offense end with great ball movement.

Dressing a near full roster this past Monday, the Reels have seemingly begun to find some fluidity to their offense.  Panini's was giving up a lot of open space in the middle of the key with their own version of the 2-3 zone and the good guys took advantage shooting 11 of 23 from the floor inside the arc, good enough for 48%.

Over half of the teams offense came from those baskets as well as the 11 free throws the team made (11/15, 73%).

Though the three ball wasn't falling at a great clip (9/28, 32%), they made some big ones when it was needed.  Throughout the first half, the HHR relied a little more heavily on the long ball, taking 17 three pointers which left them with a 26-23 lead at the half.

But as the ball movement increased, the three point attempts dropped and the lead widened.  The Reels only took 11 three pointers in the second half and started to convert more open looks under and around the basket, something that started to look for late in the first.

A large lead towards the middle of the second half quickly dropped to only four after a few turnovers and defensive letdowns.  Yet a quick timeout by coach Jason Hunter settled the team down and the team pushed back out to a double digit lead by the end of the game.

Brandon Hunter led all scorers with 29 points; Andy Kempf led on the glass with 11.

The Human Highlight Reels will face Thee Money Team this coming Monday at 7:25.  Thee Money Team currently stands at 2-7, slating them 7th out of 8 teams in Division III.