WellsFargo Black and Gold Basketball Blowout Recap

The 2002-03 Iowa Hawkeyes men's basketball team gave their fans an early glimpse of things to come during the upcoming season Saturday afternoon at the Wells Fargo Black & Gold Basketball Blowout.

The 12 man squad showed moments of greatness as well as some early pre-season mistakes. However, when it was all said and done, the estimated 5,200 fans in attendance witnessed quite a few good things, including the game winning three pointer by freshman point guard Jeff Horner, giving the Black team a 68-66 victory.

Senior combo guard Chauncey Leslie looked like he is ready to step in and give the Hawkeyes the much needed leadership they will need during the season. Leslie, who played with both teams during the forty-minute scrimmage, scored 13 points for the Gold team on 5-12 shooting (2-6 from three point land) in the first half. After switching to the Black team at halftime, Leslie helped lead his squad to victory with 15 points, including a big three pointer with 1:28 remaining in the game to bring the Black team within a point at 66-65.

Junior Brody Boyd put on an outstanding shooting performance in the second half of Saturday's scrimmage. Boyd struggled from the floor in the first half shooting 1-10 (0-4 from three point range) for the Black team. After halftime, Boyd had switched to the Gold team, and found his shooting stroke. The 5-11 junior combo guard would keep the Gold team close throughout the second half, as he hit 7-9 (2-4 from beyond the three point line) good for 17 points.

Newcomers, Horner and freshman forward Greg Brunner obviously are going to be called upon this season to help as much as possible, and they showed at times that they are capable of doing just that. Horner, who played strictly with the Black team finished the game with eight points on 3-12 shooting, dished out 3 assists, and accounted for 5 steals on defense. Not to mention, the 6-2 point guard drained the game winning shot as the horn sounded. Brunner who played with both teams, scored just two points for the Gold team in the first half, but made his presence known on the boards as he snatched six rebounds in the half. After switch jerseys at halftime, the 6-7 forward came out in the second half and showed a little more offense as he scored eights points and grabbed four rebounds.

Junior forwards Sean Sonderleiter and Jared Reiner were all over the boards, as they battled each other the entire game. Sonderleiter, who played with the Black team finished the game with nine points and 17 rebounds. Reiner was the man in the middle for the Gold team, and he made that known as he ended up with 12 points and 15 rebounds.

After witnessing a few practices and both Midnight Madness and the Wells Fargo Black & Gold Basketball Blowout this past weekend, a few things have caught my attention:

  • For starters, Chauncey Leslie realizes that this is his final year, and he needs to step up and become a leader for this team.
  • Jared Reiner was given a chance to play on the Big 10 All Star team this past summer over seas, and that obviously is going to pay off for him, as he is going to raise his game to another level.
  • Newcomers Jeff Horner, Greg Brunner and walk-on Kurt Spurgeon are going to be asked a lot of them early on in the season, but we will see them rise to the occasion and perform years above their age.
  • Both Sean Sonderleiter and Jared Reiner are going to earn their living on the block, scoring down low and working hard on the boards.
  • Glen Worley, if he plays the way he did in the first half on Saturday, will no doubt be an All Big 10 performer by the end of the season.
  • Brody Boyd will need to show his shooting touch like he did in the second half Saturday to help stretch the defense this season.

Iowa will have two pre-season games prior to the start of their regular season. On Wednesday November 13th, the Hawkeyes will host the EA Sports All Stars, and their second pre-season game will be on Tuesday November 19th as the Nike Elite Exhibition team will come to Carver Hawkeye Arena.

Head Coach Steve Alford and the 2002-03 Iowa Hawkeyes will tip off their season for real on Sunday November 24th as they host the Owls from Florida Atlantic.

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