Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Summertime Hawks

Delaware County Pro-Am Men's Basketball Summer League

Messrs. Hilliard, Baptiste, Crosgile, O'Brien, Irwin, and Jones.

Took in some summer league action last night... and had a great time. Probably 80% of the people in the stands were Hawks... because 80% of the guys on the floor were Hawks!

The venue has changed from the un-air-conditioned courts in Aston to the air -conditioned courts at Cheney State. While the teams are limited by how many players can be from the same team -- we benefited by seeing Hawk alums playing with current Hawks and future hawks... who I guess don't count yet.

Former Hawk Yah Davis played in the first game, as did Hawk turned Blue Hen Jawan Carter, who lit it up from downtown.

Met some of our new Hawks who are great guys who I know will represent St. Joe's well both on and off the court. After trading e-mails I finally met Mr. and Mrs. Baptiste, who drove down to see their son play. Carl had told me that in high school when his son threw down a dunk the crowd would chant "you've been baptized." What surprised me however was Carl's range... opponents who let him hang out past the three point line will do so at their own risk.

Chet was there, and as he ran by I did a "C-H-E-T... Chet, Chet, Chet." He smile running down the court and said "I needed that." How fortunate are the young guys to have Hawk greats like Chet and Dave Mallon there.

So while there were plenty of Hawks in the stands, and plenty of Hawks on the floor, perhaps the younger guys there were unaware that there was also a Hawk as referee. Former Hawk great Jeffery Clarke, SJU '82, one of the all time leader in steals on Hawk Hill and member of Bo's '81-82 25-5 club, was blowing the whistle. Tip off was delayed as Brian Murphy and I asked Jeff why he doesn't ref any St. Joe's games... pretty funny guy ;-)

Some pics and some takes from last night. I enjoy summer league ball for what it is -- organized pick up games that give you a glimpse into what will be. I don't know how this season will be for us but a few plays made me a just a bit giddy. Love the new backcourt. Yup... young, not-so-tall, a bit skinny, but the hoops acumen is there. Justin and Tay go North-South, not East-West, and it would be nice to see some dribble penetration. haven't seen it in a while on Hawk Hill.

If you need your fix of hawk Hoops this summer
you can download the full 2009 game schedule by clicking here.



Ref Clarke blowing the whistle on Jesilowski?

6th Man's take...

Went over with 44 tonight. There were SEVERAL Hawk alums in attendance. And we got to see a lot of current and former Hawks. We got there early enough to see the first game in which Jawan Carter lit it up. But I digress......Tay did struggle but showed flashes of his quickness, court vision, and scoring ability. According to one of the kids who played in the first game, the guy Tay was playing against plays at Colgate. Tay is very quick. He has a great handle. His problem will be the fact that he is reed thin. From what others said who have seen him before, tonight was just an off night. He did drain a three, had a very nice take against the trees in traffic, and made some very nifty passes.

Crosgile really impressed me. He has very quick hands and used them to pick several pockets. He's sneaky quick. He's very business-like on the floor - not too flashy, not mouthy. Just plays his game and is quietly effective. The Rashid Bey comparison is a good one. He looks much stronger than Tay in the upper body. Tay and Crosgile played well together with Tay running the point when the two were on the floor together. Both have PG skills though and both appear to have the PG mentality.

Baptiste could be a pleasant surprise. He's strong. He's not afraid to bang down low. He drained a three in motion on a semi fast break. He had some other nice moves in closer where he showed some touch. I think he could actually contribute this year. Irwin looked the same to me. Jump shot maybe a little improved but still has a fairly slow release.

O'Brien was very solid. He was on the same team as Mallon and he's every bit as big as Dave. I think he puts the ball on the floor a bit too much for a post player, but he has some nice moves, and has good hands. Ahmad Nivins he is not. But he can play a little bit.
Idris had several emphatic dunks - a couple of which were in traffic. He is a very quick leaper. His jump shot looked bad to me tonight though. He looks like he's trying to increase the quickness on his release, but he appeared to be rushing jump shots tonight. He was very effective around the hoop though.

Prescott was in the house to hang and watch, but did not play. AJ Rogers is, I believe, on Idris' team but did not show.
Very good time. Glad I went out. This was my first time seeing the frosh and O'Brien.

These two looked like they've been playing together for years.

SJ00918's take....
After watching what should be 6 of a 9 man rotation (all but Williamson, Prescott & Darren) play last night it raised my expectations for the coming year a bit. They should be fast and hopefully score a lot in transition. Everybody ran the floor well last night including all the bigs. Irwin was leaking out on several fast breaks. I know it is summer ball but I liked what I saw last night. Here is my recap:

O'Brien: A true post player. Aggressive, good hands, puts the ball on the floor a bit too much. Will do a good job holding the middle.
Idris: I think Idris knows the Hawks are going to need more scoring from him this year. Seems more aggressive around the basket. Great hand - handled every slick pass thrown his way and finished strong.
Irwin: Streaky - was hot early but then cooled off. Ran the floor well and finished with nasty slams.

Jones: Very thin. Reminds me of a shorter Tim Brown physically. Quick, had some good passes. Had trouble with the kid from Colgate. I think mostly due to lack of experience.
Baptiste: Like him more every time I see him. Big and athletic, runs the floor, bangs down low, hit a nice three. Has the physical skill to be very good but has to learn how to use them.

Crosgile: Agree with the comparisons to Rashid. Really liked his game Very quick, seemed to jump into the passing lane from nowhere. Not flashy, very workmanlike going about his game. Very impressed.

Also, it was good to see former Harks Dave Mallon and Chet Stachaitis on the court.

Chet and Dave with Todd O'Brien.

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