Slam Dunk To The Beach, Day Four
Bergen Catholic 58, Starkville 57
Our Savior 62, Good Counsel 60
Gonzaga 61, St. Andrews 48
Hillcrest 48, Sanford 44
Bullis 43, Spingarn 41
Germantown Academy 45, St. Mark's 39
Friends Central 65, Laurel 44
St. Augustine 72, Cape Henlopen 40
Game of the Day: Starkville vs. Bergen Catholic
Travis Outlaw was all set to play the hero. With 7.3 seconds remaining he converts two free throws to give Starkville a one point lead over Bergen Catholic. He made the free throws with great calmness for a man who had just missed five in a row. Game over, right?
Well, Bergen's John Iannuzzi had played a total of 7 minutes prior to the final play of the game. He had taken just one shot but did have a pair of assists. He was the most unlikely of the Bergen five to wind up with the ball in his but he did anyway. In a scramble mode, Iannuzzi, from just beyond the free throw line, hit a wide open Adrian Joseph with a pass and Joseph dunked it for the game winner at the buzzer. Magical ending to a well played game.
Travis Outlaw, SF, Starkville: We've said this before about a few players, but we've probably never meant it more than this time: Outlaw's athleticism changes games. He got off to a poor shooting start against Bergen Catholic and his team was about to get run out of the gym. But, in the second quarter he threw down one of his patented dunks off a miss and then made a few shots and after being outscored 21-9 in the first quarter, Starkville outscores BC 23-9 in the second.
Outlaw's leaping ability, once unleashed, actually seemed to have BC startled. He plays above the square on the backboard. He launches himself high in the air on his jumper and he launches himself with reckless abandon for rebounds. Sure his stroke needs some work, but there are parts of his game that simply can't be accounted for on a stat sheet or quantified with numbers. He'll win the McDonald's All-American game dunk contest with room to spare. He scored 26 on 10-for-21 from the floor.
Mustafa Shakur, PG, Friends Central: Just another day at the office for one of the nation's best senior point guards. Against a team from Delaware, Shakur did his thing to the tune of 12 points, 14 rebounds and 5 assists. At one point in the fourth quarter it almost seemed like he was just amusing himself with the passes he was leaving for his teammates.
Will Sheridan, PF, Sanford: Stan Waterman's teams have played some great games in their years at the Slam Dunk and came close to completing the rally on Sunday. With the help of Sheridan who hit a key jumper to get Sanford within 3 points late, they nearly did it again. Sheridan, the Villanova signee, played most of the second half with foul trouble but did manage to score 14 points on 7-for-10 shooting.
Sean Banks, SF, Bergen Catholic: He scored the ball well on Sunday and tossed in 22 points. He banged a crucial 3-pointer at the half to at least stop the bleeding after Starkville went on a major tear. He did commit a few ball handling errors, but made it for it with his offensive production.
James Gist, C, Good Counsel: Gist went on a scoring binge in the first half when he finished everything and did it with flair. He was dunking, converting at the rim and finishing. He would foul out with 22 points, 2 blocks and 4 rebounds. As he gains confidence offensively and he certainly had it today, he'll continue to gain popularity with the college scouts.
Tello Palacios, PF, Our Savior: If he continues to progress the way he has, he'll continue to make his up the recruiting lists. When you talk about the best players at his position, his name comes up in the conversation. He tossed in 19 points against Good Counsel.
Jerome Johnson, C, Bullis: Sunday's effort against Spingarn was by far and away his best performance in Lewes. Spingarn is a good team and without his inside presence and scoring outburst, it would have been tough to pull out the win. Johnson did some things on offense that he previously hadn't shown. He had 18 and 9 rebounds to go with 3 blocks and 3 steals.
Joe Dyson, C, Sanford: Credit Dyson for shedding some pounds. The decrease in weight has led to an increase in production. He's moving better, showing more offense and overall has made strides with his game.
Ryans Ayers, SG-SF, Germantown: He keyed the Patriots attack with 18 points, including a smooth 7-for-8 from the field. He's a good looking sophomore prospect with great basketball genes.
William Barnes, PG, Hillcrest: At least one Hillcrest assistant thinks he's a natural two guard which is kind of scary considering how good he looks with the ball in his hands right now. He's a very good athlete and showed signs of being a prime time performer on Sunday when he drilled crucial free throws at the end of the game.
Off The Dribble
Luke Owings had 12 points and 9 rebounds, his best Slam Dunk outing this year, in a win over St. Andrews. … St. Andrews likes to shoot the 3-pointer but didn't have much success in their first game following the emotional loss to St. Benedict's. Abdi Lidonde continued to stroke it (4-for-8) but the rest of the team was just 1-for-12 and turned it over 20 times. …
Konimba Diarra, though still not much of factor in the scoring column, is making strides. We think his body is starting to loosen up and he's playing much less stiff and much more athletically. We like the progress and South Florida should too. … Thumbs up to Miles Orman of Bergen Catholic who did his best in the third quarter to slow down Travis Outlaw. It was a difficult assignment and he was able to help BC contain him to a degree. ... Omari Israel was a rebound shy of the double-double against Our Savior. He scored 16 points.