Coleman, Royals excel in victory

On Tuesday night, Gopher commit Joe Coleman and Hopkins High School faced off against St. Louis Park at the Lindbergh Center. Coleman and the defending state champion Royals took an early lead and never looked back in their route of the Orioles.

The game started with fast paced action from the Royals on the defensive end. Quick steals by junior guard Siyani Chambers led to easy points in transition for the champs. The Royals jumped out to an early 10-2 lead and kept the pressure on. With a solid team effort, Hopkins took a 40-8 lead with seven minutes left in the first. The Royals continued to pour it on, eventually winning by a score of 102-57.

Gopher commit Joe Coleman played well for the Royals in their game on Tuesday. In total, he scored 20 points while sitting out the final seven minutes of the game. When Coleman got the ball on the outside he would easily beat his man and take the ball to the hoop. His first step was lightening quick, making it look effortless for the 6-foot-3 wing to get into the lane.

Once in the paint, Coleman elevated over his opponents for short buckets. Coleman did force one or two shots in traffic but for the most part he was able to dish the ball if he got into trouble down low. He was also very effective in transition, throwing down two thunderous dunks in the second half. Coleman did not show off any sort of jump shot in the game although his stroke looked smooth and on target in warm-ups.

Overall, Coleman played a solid game, setting his teammates up and scoring when he got the chance. Coleman looked to be an unselfish player who knew he could almost score at will against St. Louis Park. This team-oriented style of play displayed by Coleman should fit perfectly with Tubby Smith and the Gophers next season.

One player to keep an eye on from Hopkins is 5-foot-11 junior point guard Siyani Chambers. Chambers is an electrifying presence on both ends of the court. Defensively he has very quick hands and came up with numerous steals that led to easy points on the break. He is a great ball handler in transition where he speeds past defenders for quick layups or assists to teammates. Chambers also showed off an impressive jumper both midrange and from three, notching 18 points in the win. Watch for Chambers to attract more division one attention throughout the next year.

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