Wisdom Withstanding

Wisdom basketball team win their first district game with four players

Wisdom boy’s basketball team. vype.com

Originally appeared on Vype.com

On February 10, 2018 Wisdom Boy’s Basketball Team took a giant leap in the right direction.

All year long the team has struggled to play together as a team, but unfortunate circumstances in their recent game against Waltrip left them with no choice but to count on each other.

In the game, Wisdom trailed nearly the entire game before finally tying the game in the fourth quarter.

They did well in the fourth by outscoring Waltrip 10-7 but that wouldn’t be enough to get the win, instead the game was extended into overtime.

4-ON-5

The Generals did well in overtime as they were leading 43-41, but when two of their players fouled out Wisdom was only left with 4 players who could finish the game.

“I felt like we had a shot,” Mike Todd, Wisdom’s head coach said. “I told them this may be the one right here if they keep doing what we’ve been going over.”

With 20 seconds left Wisdom had to inbound the ball with only a 43-41 lead.

With only four players on the court, Wisdom’s inbounder only had three options to pass it to and since Waltrip had the advantage in numbers they covered up a good portion of the court.

COURT AWARENESS

However, though it appeared that Waltrip had the advantage in numbers, them loading up on one side of the court cost them.

“When we were inbounding the ball I saw everybody over to one side and it was just one side open,” sophomore Justin Jones said. “I ran to the open side and caught the ball because I knew nobody was going to get to me in time.”

Once Jones caught the ball he got fouled with only 3 seconds remaining. He went to the foul line and hit the first free-throw then missed the second one. Before Waltrip could get a hold of the ball to launch up a shot, the clock had expired and Wisdom had won 44-41.

LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT YEAR

“It was heart-pounding and a really cool experience to have to seal the deal and won the game,” Jones said.

Jones led the team with a double-double, he had 15 points and a least 10 rebounds.

Getting the win gave Wisdom their first district victory of the season, but most importantly, Todd thinks winning the way they did boosted the players confidence which will cause them to have a better season next year.

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A WEEKLY REVIEW OF CRENNEL'S COACHING

Now my job: Texans feast on Lions

Photo by Getty Images.

Thanksgiving is full of tradition. There's the typical family gathering, large meal, and of course, football. Sometimes, new traditions are added and old ones are retired. I think the Texans did both in their impressive 41-25 win over the Lions in Detroit. Old traditions were carried on (Lions losing on Thanksgiving), some were put to rest (Texans not being able to get turnovers), and new ones were started (multiple passing touchdowns by Deshaun Watson in six straight games).

The fact that this defense got three turnovers in the game was unbelievable! They got all three in the first quarter within the span of eight plays. JJ Watt's pick-six was insane. He went for a batted ball, ended up catching it, and ran it in. They forced Jonathan Williams to fumble on the Lions' very next play from scrimmage and recovered it. On the Lions' next possession, the Texans recovered yet another fumble after the challenge was reversed. Great call by the coaching staff to challenge and win. The defense looked good. Tyrell Adams stood out because he was in on those two fumbles, made 17 total tackles with 14 of them being solo tackles. They also brought pressure that seemed to make Matthew Stafford very inaccurate and resulted in four sacks. I give defensive coordinator Anthony Weaver credit for knowing he needs to blitz to get pressure, but the run defense has to improve.

The offense kept the tempo up in this game as well. The spread and hurry-up were used to keep the Lions already staggered defense off balance. Knowing the Lions were without a couple defensive backs, I thought it would be the perfect marriage of their defense and the Texans' offense. A buddy asked before the game about the line (Texans -3.5) and the over/under (52.5). I told him bet the Texans and the over because neither team can play defense and both have good quarterbacks. Offensive coordinator Tim Kelly put together another good game plan and Watson executed it flawlessly. One route combo I saw later on in the game I particularly enjoyed. Two receivers were tight to the left side. Cooks ran a hook/curl and settled in the middle of the zone while Fuller ran a vertical route. Duke Johnson ran a swing route to that same side. It left Cooks wide open as the attention went to Johnson in the flat, Fuller deep, and the action to the other play side. Route combos are important because it gives the quarterback different reads as he goes through his progressions and lets him pick apart the defense based on what he sees. Combine that with Watson's play and the way Kelly has changed his play calling now that he's liberated from he who shall not be named, we're seeing a beautiful thing.

As good as things were, there's still room for improvement. The defense gives up way too many easy yards, both run and pass. They can't get pressure bringing only four and will often give up big plays if the blitz is picked up. Plus the run defense is still an issue as evidenced by the Lions' first possession of the second half. The Lions ran the ball 10 plays straight for a total of 58 yards on that drive. Utterly ridiculous! Watson was good (17/25 318 yards and four touchdowns), but he missed two more touchdowns with passes slightly off, and continues to hold onto the ball too long at times. The difference between these two issues I've presented here is the fact that Watson has so played well, his "issues" are minor and very correctable, while the defense is terrible and there's no easy fix in sight. But let Romeo Crennel and Anthony Weaver tell it, they're getting the most out of these guys and they're playing disciplined.

The thought that this team may actually creep into the playoff picture may take shape better after next week if they can beat the Colts. I doubt it, but it is getting interesting. Let's see what else happens around them because they need help getting there.

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