Bronco's Stumble, Fall Flat in Canada

In the Broncos third game in 24 hours, and the second of the day on Sunday.. the Bronco's led headed into the final period, but faded late and simply couldn't respond when the Douglas College Royals went on a shooting spree from deep. When the dust settled from the Royal's shooting clinic, Boise State walked off the court on the wrong end of a 109-100 score.

Marquette defeated Douglas College 92-70, and Idaho defeated Douglas College 88-76, but Boise State struggled with the Royals from the opening tip as the Broncos played to an even game at the half.  In the second half the score seesawed back and forth in the 3rd quarter after the teams played to a tie in the first half.  Boise State, however, began to wear the Royals down late in the 3rd quarter with it's size advantage, getting the Duke's big men in some foul trouble.  The Royals then hit consecutive long 3-pointers to pull within 1 point late in the 3rd quarter, but once again the Bronco's responded.

The Broncos know who their MVP is, and they rode Reggie Larry's talents all night long.  When it appeared that the Royals would make a run, it was Larry, displaying his athleticism, throwing down a monster 1-handed dunk to energize his teammates, or poking the ball away to start another fast break.  When Reggie Larry wasn't out-dueling the Royal's big men, Jamar Greene was outshooting the Royal's guards.  Both of the JC-Transfer guards showed why the Bronco coaches were so excited to add them to the 2007-08 roster, as Aaron Garner made opportunistic baskets look easy and fed the post for multiple layups.

Anthony Thomas, not to be outdone by the talented newcomers, made impressive pass after pass, feeding the Bronco's big men himself, especially Matt  Nelson who appeared to have a sixth sense of where AT's passes were going.

The Bronco's began the final quarter leading 85-79.  The rotation in the final stanza is probably a good indication of what Bronco fans can expect to see this season.  Matt Nelson and Reggie Larry dominated down low, blocking shots, owning the glass, and getting layup after layup, however the Royals charged back largely thanks to a hot 3-point shooting of Bol Kong, a 6'7 forward who found himself fielding interest and offers from a very impressive list of NCAA Schools, including Washington, UNLV, Memphis, Louisville, Hawaii, Utah, Idaho and numerous other Division 1 teams.  Kong, however, was unable to obtain his U.S. student Visa, and so he is spending a year at Douglas College until his visa status is cleared.  Kong was by far the leader of the Royals and rivaled only Reggie Larry in pure athletic ability.  No doubt that every team that participated in the Canadian Tourney will leave the great white north with Kong's phone number.

Kong was a 1-man wrecking crew, hitting 3-pointer after 3-pointer, blocking shots, and dominating the Broncos single-handedly on both ends of the floor.  When the dust had largely settled on the 4th quarter, Boise State found themselves down by six, and without the services of Matt Nelson after he was ejected for fighting with a Douglas player, (both players were tossed). 

Boise State struggled to right the ship, but fatigue and the play of Bol Kong kept them from escaping with a win.  In the end, Boise State limped away on the wrong end of a 109-100 loss after scoring only 15 points in the final 10 minutes to the Royals 30.

Boise State now plays University of British Columbia, considered the best Canadian team in the tournament, at 11am Monday.

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