Mesa shuts down fire alarm & the Broncos!

PrepAZ.com welcomes our newest beat writer, A FireInside. He will do the breakdown of big games throughout the season and into the playoffs! Let's welcome him as we all look forward to his "Inside The Fire" as he becomes a fixture for PrepAZ.com!

Fire had a hot date last night and got to the gym a little late, so i'll add my 2 cents and he will snag the 2nd half!

Mesa shuts down fire alarm & the Broncos!

Walking into the Brophy gym last night, déjà vu set in. I remembered I saw the same game last year with very different results.

Mesa Jackrabbits came out this night relaxed, intense and confident. Coach Shawn Lynch has his club ready for the Broncos, and the game plan (he stuck with it for 32 minutes) was carried out with perfection.

Mesa hit (8 3's in a row I believe) and played loose and Crashed The Boards (that would be a great name for a message board) against a more athletic Brophy team. Jared Westergard was unconscious, and Mike Crowell came off the bench to give the Jackrabbits solid play inside and out.

The amazing event happened in the 2nd half, as the gym's fire alarm rang loud. The ref's continued to stop play, until they gave up and let play continue over the last 2 minutes.

PLAY OF THE GAME: In crunch time, Mesa's Lee Cummard finished an underneath lay-up on the break and got fouled. Most players would never have scored plus get the 3 pt. play. The play won the game for Mesa.

Coach Lynch: One of the best in Arizona, and a true success. Lynch is the MVP of this game.  Wins over Hamilton and Brophy, can someone say "a huge candidate for Coach of the Year"!

Mesa Uniforms: Bad. Come on Administration; spring for some new threads for the man. You have one of the best, treat him right!

Brophy: Congrats to Punch and co.! With the injuries to Gerad and Shu, the Broncos never got going like they could have without the setbacks.

 

AFIREINSIDE take it away!

The score at the half was 38-34 in favor of Mesa High. The third started with Brophy's Gerad Punch converting two free throws, making the score 38-36. Brophy began to battle back into the game behind penetration from Punch and some nice drives by Panagiotakopoulos, who had 16 pts on the night. The Broncos found themselves up by as much as four midway through the third. Mesa was able to stay close with their three point shooting and inside buckets. Nearing the end of the third the Brophy gym fire alarm started going off and would continue to be a problem the rest of the game, it was quite annoying. The third quarter ended and the score was 50-49, Mesa High Jackrabbits.

The fourth quarter would be an intense on and the fire alarm, that went off when it wanted to, was a problem. Brophy started off by grabbing a small lead, around 3 or 4, and Mesa would come right back. The teams traded buckets and the game went down to the wire. Brophy was up 59-58 with 1:26 left in the game. The Jackrabbits were too much for the Broncos tonight. Connecting on 10 threes for the game and working the ball down low. With :12 seconds left, Brophy was down 63-61 and the ball was passed down under the basket to Gerad Punch, unfortunately Punch lost handle on the ball and it fell out of bounds, Mesa ball. Jared Westergard was fouled, made his 2 free throws, the score was 65-61 with :04 on the clock. The inbound was stolen, game over. Mesa plays again. Brophy looks forward to next season.

Brophy 14 20 15 12 61

Mesa 23 15 12 15 65

Brophy's Big 3 - Thanasi Panagiotakopoulos - 16 pts, hit a few threes and had nice drives to the basket - Gerad Punch - 14 pts, not the way this senior wanted to go out, good luck at Furman Univ. next year - John Shumate - 10 pts, aslo not the way to go out for this senior guard.

Mesa's Big 3 - Jared Westergard - 21 pts, did it all tonight, sealed the win with 2 clutch FTs - Travis Lebaron - 11pts, nice contribution - Lee Cummard - 11 pts, good game from the big guy.

 
2.20.03
 

Tournament Preview: 2nd Round -  Mesa at Brophy College Prep

Thursday, Feb. 20th - Robson Gym - Brophy -  Mesa and Brophy haven't played against eachother since the first game of the Broncos' season.  December 3rd, 2002.  A lot of things have changed for both teams since then.  Play has improved, players have improved, team chemistry has molded better, and so on.  Tonight's game will be much much different than their last meeting.  Speaking of their last meeting, the Mesa High Jackrabbits were defeated by the Brophy Broncos, 56-45.  Jared Westergard led Mesa with 12 and John Shumate led Brophy with 14.  No one knows what to expect from tonight's game and I'm sure if I asked "who will win", I'd get about a 50/50 even response for both teams.  Brophy looks better on paper, they are 9th in the Power Rankings, 5th in the AZ Rep, and they have been peaking at the end of the season.  Mesa, who had four players make it to honors in the East Valley Region (Cummard, 1st Team - Westergard, 2nd Team - Shumway and Heywood, Honorable Mention) are coming off of a 69-54 first round win over Chandler Hamilton.  Mesa got the #2 ranking in the East Valley because they failed to knock off Mesa Mtn. View.  Expect anything from tonight's game, if Westergard and Cummard hit their shots - Mesa has a good chance - if Shumate, Punch, and Panagiotakopoulos are on - Brophy will have a good chance.  Its Anyone's game. 

2.19.03
 

Goldwater Beats Desert Mtn. By 10, Earns Second Round Trip

Tuesday, Feb. 18 - "Dawg's Gym" Goldwater High School - A close game was expected tonight by two pretty evenly matched teams.  Desert Mountain looked to have the upper hand on paper, having the tougher schedule, better Power Rankings position, and the like.  Goldwater had their home court and their avid fan base, as well as Eric Novack, Dan Klemme, and the hardest worker on the court, Ed Hasbrouck. The gym was filled up nicely as the game was about to get underway.

The game was under way and throughout the first quarter it looked as everyone had suspected.  A close game.  With around 2:45 left in the first it was knotted up at 9 a piece and looked as if it were going to stay that way, close that is, for the rest of the contest.  Goldwater pulled ahead with the help of a Mike Sawtelle layup and Danny Smith had one as well, the score at the end of the first was 13-10, Goldwater Dawgs!

The second quarter started with a BANG! from the Bulldogs.  They hit two 3s in a row to put their lead to 9, 19-10.  Desert Mountain answered back, starting with a driving layup by senior Ryan Guilfoil and a "trey" from junior Andy Leerssen.  The score was soon tied up at 19. The score continued to bounce back and forth for the rest of the second quarter.  Nearing the end of the quarter, the Bulldogs began to play tighter "D" and captured a two point lead at the half, 28-26.  Desert Mountain's standout junior Chad Goldstein was pretty much a non-factor in the first half for the Wolves.

The third started and the Dawgs quickly snatched up a larger lead, thanks in part to Ed Hasbrouck who was working wonders for the Bulldog offense.  The lead was 35-31 for Goldwater, but they started missing shots and making stupid passes (i.e. Eric Novack threw a full court inbound pass right to a Desert Mtn. player.) and the lead was then in favor of the Wolves 36-35 behind a Goldstein field goal and a Mike Leto 3 point play.  Goldstein hit a field goal to make it 38-35, but it was cut to 38-37 by the Dawgs with 3:00 left in the third.  Troy Dueling then hit a monster three for Goldwater that put them back on top for good, 40-38.  Eric Novack hit a couple of 2s and Goldstein responded with a few of his own, the score at the end of the third was 46-42, Goldwater Bulldogs.  The quarter ended with a reversed call by the officials, Eric Novack appeared to cross a DM defender and lost the ball out of bounds, this was the initial call, but then it was reversed when another ref said it went off the DM defender's foot.  This didn't sit well with the Desert Mountain faithful.

The fourth started with an Andy Leerssen 3 that made it 46-45, Goldwater.  The score would stay that way for a few minutes amidst a jumble of traveling, a double foul, missed shots, and Goldwater running the clock.  Then with about 5:00 left in the game Dan Klemme hit a 3 for Goldwater to make their lead 49-45.  Desert Mtn. began to go into "foul now and hope they can't hit freethrows or we're done" mode.  Much to their dismay, Goldwater hit their freethrows.  Scott Ellis started it off, making 2, and putting the lead up to 51-45.  DM's Tanner Peyton hit a field goal cutting it to 51-47.  Ed Hasbrouck hit two freethrows with 3:04 left, making it 53-47.  Chad Goldstein was fouled trying a put back, he made both and the score was 53-49.  Hasbrouck made 2, making it 55-49.  Then senior Tanner Peyton hit a field goal for Desert Mtn. keeping them close at 55-51.  DM inplemented a press now, but that didn't deter the Dawgs.  Alan Flemming hit 2 freethrows, making it 57-51, DM's Andy Leerssen, a three point threat, fouled out.  Chad Goldstein was fouled on the other end, but missed a one and one attempt.  The teams played the foul game and with around :16 seconds, Ed Hasbrouck was on a fast break and was complete and utterly slaughtered while he went up.  Intentional foul.  He made 1 of 2 and then made a very pretty "up and under" layup with his left hand to make the score 63-53.  Game over.  Desert Mtn. goes home.  Goldwater plays again.

Goldwater           13          15        18         17             63

Desert Mtn.        10         16       16        11                53

Goldwater's Big 3 - Ed Hasbrouck - 17 pts, hardest worker on the court! great job Ed! - Dan Klemme - 11 pts - Threepoint threat all the time, nicely done tonight. -  Eric Novack - 9 pts, Novack always plays with intensity, this helped lead his team to see another day.

Desert Mtn's Big 3 - Chad Goldstein - 17 pts, a non-factor in the first half, had it going in the second - Tanner Peyton - 11 pts, a nice final game in a Wolves "uni" by this senior - Andy Leerssen - 8 pts, fouled out, always a threat from beyond the arch.

2.18.03
 

5A First Round Matchup! Northwest #2 Goldwater vs. Central #3 Scottsdale Desert Mountain

Tuesday, February 18 - Goldwater High School - Two teams from the opposite sides of the city will meet to do battle at Goldwater's gymnasium.  This 5A First round matchup showcases Scottsdale Desert Mountain and Goldwater High.  Desert Mountain is coming off a mediocre season in which they came out of the ever so hard Central region in third place.  Goldwater also had a mediocre season, losing to a few teams they should have beat and they're only real competition all year was battling with Mountain Ridge and Deer Valley, Goldwater's schedule strength was, lets say, not strong at all.  On the other hand neither was Desert Mountain's, but DM is in a region that features Desert Vista, Mountain Pointe, Marcos de Niza, and Corona del Sol.  The key for Goldwater to come out with a 1st round win is teamwork and leadership on the court from Eric Novack, Scott Ellis, and Dan Klemme.  If the team works together, Klemme, Novack, and Ellis have good games, and the defense shuts down Chad Goldstein and the Wolves' offense, then Goldwater will have the opportunity to play Camelback in the 2nd round.  For Desert Mountain to win, Chad Goldstein needs to lead the way like he's done most of the year, Tanner Peyton and Perry Ullman need to contribute, and Mike Leto needs to dish out some dimes.  I think anyone who goes to the game will enjoy a well played match up by two very well matched up teams.  My prediction - Desert Mountain 63 - Goldwater 55  -  - - Chad Goldstein 14 pts - - Eric Novack 19 pts.  Whichever team wins this game will have the privelage of playing Metro #1 Camelback in the 2nd round on Thursday. Good luck to both teams, congratulations on making it to the Class 5A State Tournament.

AFIREINSIDE
 
 
2.11.03
 
2A Metro Region Tournament: Game One: #3 Northwest Community Christian vs. #6 Phoenix Country Day School
 
Tonight's game might not be as easy as NWCC had hoped.  In their last meeting, just seven days ago, the Crusaders won 55-51, they showed bad signs when they were only able to muster 3 points in the second quarter, but they battled back, outscoring PCDS in the third and fourth quarters.  NWCC finished off their regular season with a win against a struggling Valley Lutheran team, 50-40.  PCDS showed that they can play with the third ranked Crusaders, the Eagles need big games from stars Michael Reinbold and Matt Kostrivas for PCDS to take the victory.  Justin Abbate and Kyle Whisler need to step their play up to another level for the Eagles.  For NWCC to achieve victory and a chance to play #2 Scottsdale Christian, I believe, they need Rick Hoffman and Ryan Hoffner to contribute nicely and if Ramsey Schantz plays well, I think they'll be ok.  But they need to stay away from those 3 point second quarters, or any quarters for that matter if they want to win.  The game is at Phoenix College at 5:15pm.
 
2A Metro Region Tournament: Game Two: #4 Phoenix Christian vs. #5 Bourgade Catholic
 
Anything can happen in this game and I'm 100% serious.  One could expect a blowout for either sides, a close game, anything.  These two have met twice this year, PC won the first meeting 59-34 behind 18 points from Geoff Burns and 12 from Seth Robinson.  Bourgade won the second meeting 60-53 behind 21 from Quinton Bellamy and 14 by Tony Santana, Seth Robinson led PC with 21 points in that game.  For Bourgade to win this game Bellamy and Santana need to replicate their last performance against PC, Stephen Villa needs a quality game on both offense and defense, Rabbanni FurQuann needs to hit the glass hard, and Joe Pena and Gabriel Pierre need to step up off the bench.  PC lost their last game of the regular season to #1 Valley Christian by 7 points, Robinson and Burns played very well. If PC wants to win this game against BCHS, Robinson and Burns need to have the same kind of game that they had against VC, and Josh Schleuter and Luke Bevans need to play at a higher level, they (PC) should be fine if that happens and their defense performs to its ability.  The game is at 8:45 in the Phoenix College Gym. 

February 8. 2003

Brophy Survives Scare From St.Mary's

Friday, February 7th - St.Mary's - After a celebration for the St.Mary's senior students on both cheer basketball the game was underway.  The Broncos took control of things in the beginning, their shots went down, their defense was stingy, and Levi Lopez missed his first three, setting the tone for his night.  The small gymnasium was filled to capacity and over (there were people in line waiting to get in while the game was going on).  In the first it looked as if the Broncos were set to administer a blow out win at St.Mary's.  The score at the end of the quarter was 16-9, Brophy.

St.Mary's started the second quarter on a run, now it was their defense that was stingy and their shots started to fall.  The Knights came back into the game, tied it up, and eventually took the lead.  All this behind, Senior Michael Fow, Justin Bayless, and Levi Lopez, who hit a three at the halftime buzzer.  Brophy was unable to keep up their form from the first quarter and fell behind.  Nearing the horn, Thanasi Pantagiotakopoulos hit a three for Brophy tying the score at 26, seconds later, Levi Lopez hit a three at the horn, making it 29-26, St.Mary's lead at the half.

Brophy started the third quarter the way they played the first, they were able to deny the Knights on offense and built around a 6 point lead, that they would hold for the quarter.  St.Mary's seemed to come out flat, just like in the first.  Brophy was lead by Gerad Punch's inside game, and John Shumate's ability to handle the ball and shake the Knights out of their shoes.  St. Mary's Michael Baker picked up an intentional foul near the 3 minute mark of the third when Brophy's Jake Lewis went crashing down by the Broncos' bench.  It looked as it he had been pushed from behind and that's what the refs perceived it as, so consequently they called an intentional foul. Brophy took advantage and increased their lead. The score at the end of the third was 48-37, Brophy.

The fourth, final, and must exciting quarter started with St.Mary's clawing their way back like they did in the second quarter.  Unfortunately for the Knights, the Broncos lead was too large to over come completely, the Knights outscored Brophy 21-14 in the fourth behind the shooting of Michael Fow and Levi Lopez and the inside play of Justin Bayless.  St.Mary's Michael Baker fouled out of the game with 2:02 left of the clock.  The Knight's tried to cut the lead to 2 or 3 but failed to do so as the Broncos hit their clutch free throws.  The score at the final horn was 62-58, Brophy Broncos.  The Broncos move to 2-0 against the Knights this season.  It was the final regular season game for both teams. 

Brophy             16        10           22        14            62

St.Mary's         9          20           8          21           58

Brophy's Big 3 - Gerad Punch - 18 pts, great on the boards and from the field. - John Shumate - 18 pts, great ball control and shooting - Thanasi Pantagiotakopoulos - 8 pts, good defending and handling

St. Mary's Big 3 - Michael Fow - 16 pts, good effort by this senior on "senior night" - Levi Lopez - 14 pts, scored 25 on BCP last meeting, shot was off tonight. - Justin Bayless - 10 pts, great on the board and was a presence in the middle for the Knights.

February 7, 2003

Preview: Brophy Broncos @ St.Mary's Knights

Friday, February 7th - St.Mary's - Broncos vs. Knights II: What will happen this time? Yes, it's that time of year when Brophy or St.Mary's (this year it's St.Mary's) gets their chance for sweet revenge.  At 7pm on Friday night, the second battle will tipoff.  Brophy won the first game, 55-44 in front of a large crowd at Brophy.  Now it's at the much smaller St.Mary's gym, if you plan on going, get there around 6:15...just some kind advice.  St. Mary's is on a cold streak, losing two straight (62-50 vs. Horizon, 65-58 vs. PV) and they will be looking for a way to get on track before the region tournament, and what better way to get back on track than against their rival.  Brophy has won two straight, including a 67-51 upset of then #1 ranked Tucson Salpointe, then the Broncos went on to crush the Rattlers of North Canyon by 20+ points on Tuesday, Jan.4th.  The Broncos are on a hot streak and they can be a very dangerous team, but who knows what will happen tomorrow night.  Region game + Rivalry = good basketball. 

AFIREINSIDE

 

February 5, 2003

Scottsdale Christian Holds Off Late Rally

Tuesday, February 4th - Bourgade Catholic - Bourgade Catholic knew that they could knock off this Scottsdale Christian ball club, they've done it once before, a 40-37 win at Scottsdale Christian. Bourgade's defense needed to be up to the challenge against this bigger SCA team.  Bourgade and SCA both got off to good starts.  Their respective offenses were working and defense was as well.  SCA was able to dominate the boards more than the undersized Golden Eagles were and that helped propel them to a 9-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.

Bourgade suffered a breakdown in play during the entire second quarter.  They turned the ball over, didn't rebound, their defense wasn't able to be as tight as it was in the first quarter, and their shots didn't fall.  SCA took advantage of this and blew the game wide open behind Tim Maiden, Alex Rogers, and Nkem Ojougboh.  SCA completely dominated the second quarter in every aspect.  They were up by 17 points at the break, the score was 31-14 at the half, SCA.

Bourgade came out with some renewed intensity in the third quarter.  They were able to scrap their way back into the game on the back of Tony Santana and Stephen Villa.  The Golden Eagles' defense was at it's best in the third quarter, forcing SCA to turn the ball over and take poor shots, which lead to rebounds for Bourgade and points at the other end.  If Bourgade would have played the entire game the way they played the third quarter, they would have dominated the game and won easily. 

In the fourth it looked as if Scottsdale might pull away and close the game out for good, but Bourgade's defense would have none of it.  The Golden Eagles defense was constantly bailing out the offense which seemed to go flat for a period of time in the fourth quarter.  Bourgade was led by the clutch shooting and defense of senior guard Tony Santana and junior Stephen Villa.  The score was 49-43 SCA with under a minute left in the game.  Bourgade made it 49-45 with around :15 left on the clock.  Bourgade was unable to foul right away and SCA ran the clock down to :08 seconds. They hit two clutch freethrows to make it 51-45 with :08 left.  Bourgade ran the floor, passed to Villa in the left corner and he hit a three, making it 51-48 with :02 left, sadly it was too little too late for the Bourgade Golden Eagles, they made a valiant effort and the starters must have been exhausted for Bourgade seeing that only two bench players (Pena and Pierre) came in and they were in for about a combined total of 5 or 6 minutes the ENTIRE game.  Maybe Bourgade could've pulled it out if their coach would've found a good time to rest at least one or two of his starters.  SCA wins at Bourgade tonight, 51-48.

Bourgade      7          7            14         20              48

SCA               9         22            6          14             51

 

Bourgade's Big 3 - Tony Santana - 20 pts, great effort both ways - Stephen Villa - 15 pts - (See Tony Santana) - Rabbanni FurQaan - 7 pts, nice effort on the boards

SCA's Big 3 - Tim Maiden - 14 pts, great all around game - Alex Rogers - 13 pts, good effort - Nkem Ojougboh - 7 pts, a few blocks and boards to go with his 7.

February 4, 2003

2A Preview: Scottsdale Christian Academy @ Bourgade Catholic

Tuesday, February 4th - Bourgade Catholic - To start things off, flashback to the first meeting of these two 2A Metro Region teams back on January 11th.  Bourgade came into Scottsdale Christian's gym and pulled off an upset thanks to a last second halfcourt shot by the Golden Eagles' Stephen Villa, who has contributed nicely this entire season in the shadow of Bellamy and Santana.  Bourgade won that game 40-37 thanks in part to a great defensive effort.  Scottsdale Christian is one of the powerhouses in the Metro region and definitely remembers what happened in the last meeting between these two teams.  Josh Sazdanoff, Alex Rogers, and Kevin Coble need to break down the Bourgade defense that held SCA to 37 total points last time.  Nkem Nemojougboh also needs to step it up and try to top his career high block total (7) which he attained in SCA's last game, a 65-39 win vs. Phoenix Christian.  Bourgade needs Bellamy, Santana, Villa, and FurQuann to put forth huge efforts to try and upset the Eagles for a second time this season. Bourgade, which showcases a few players who contribute consistently off the bench like Joe Pena and Point/Shooting Guard Gabriel Pierre, who scored 4 points and had a few boards in Bourgade's last game, a win at PCDS.  Pierre had 2 in a loss at NWCC, Pena had 3 in a win at Horizon Charter, Pierre had 2.  Bourgade has won two straight and 3 out of their last 4 games.  Scottsdale Christian has won 6 of their last 7 and will be looking to make it 7 of their last 8 on Tuesday night.  The Eagles will be out for revenge and the Golden Eagles of Bourgade need to step up their play on both sides of the ball if they want that 2nd upset.  Look forward to a good one.

AFIREINSIDE

February 1, 2003

Brophy Stuns #1 Ranked Salpointe!
 
The seats were quite full on the Brophy side for this Saturday evening showdown between the Brophy Broncos and #1 Salpointe Lancers.  The Broncos, fresh off a one point loss to region foe Shadow Mountain the night before, were out to prove something tonight.  The Lancers may have taken the Broncos for a joke because they had lost to Shadow Mtn. and Salpointe was fresh off a romping of Casa Grande 85-47.
 
The game would begin and end for the undefeated Lancers in the first quarter.  Brophy came out with intensity and captured a 9-6 lead with a few minutes left in the first.  The Broncos Gerad Punch would sit out some of the first and after that, the entire game because of an injury.  The Broncos needed to step it up in his absence and that they did.  The first quarter ended with Salpointe down, but not totally out of it, 11-6.
 
The second quarter began and Salpointe couldn't find an answer to the Broncos pesky defense.  The Lancers missed shots and turned the ball over and the Broncos' John Shumate showed the Salpointe fans and Daniel Waddy that he's no joke as he stuck with Waddy the entire night.  A variety of Brophy players stepped up their play to put the Lancers down by a larger margin at the half.  The buzzer sounded and the Salpointe Lancers trailed the Brophy Broncos 30-17 at the half.
 
The Broncos came out in the second half with the same kind of intensity that was showed in the first half. They were able to stop the Lancers with their defense and pick apart the Salpointe defense for inside buckets.  The Lancers tried and tried to comeback into the game in the third quarter, a low scoring quarter for both sides.  Salpointe outscored Brophy 13-10 in the third and looked as if they had enough juice still left to make a fourth quarter run.  The third quarter ended with the score 40-30, Brophy.
 
The fourth and final quarter ended and the Lancers were never able to crawl back, as they trailed by as many as 19 points in the fourth.  Foul trouble mid way through the fourth hit both teams, Salpointe was hit the hardest as star Daniel Waddy fouled out with 3:17 left in the fourth, Brophy's John Shumate would foul out a little while later.  The energy behind the Brophy crowd seemed to propel the Broncos' D to buckle down and not let the Lancers back into the game, they didn't and that tough hard nosed D led to Salpointe turnovers and Brophy blew the game wide open.  Salpointe's  Damir Suljacic was of no help to the Lancers as he went into foul trouble and had 0 points in the game.  As the crowd began to chant "overrated", the Lancers looked dejected and Brophy's coach sent in the bench.  Brophy's fan favorite, Nate "Big Bird" Wanner contributed two points off the bench and Kellen Chavez nailed a three to put the icing on the cake for the Broncos.  As the final horn sounded the score was 67-51 in favor of Brophy and the Broncos exited the floor amidst a standing ovation from their student section. Brophy is now 7-1 at home in "Robson Gym" and they are 16-6 on the season.  Salpointe loses their first game of the season, but they most likely will still hold the #1 ranking.
 
Brophy            11       19         10          27         67
Salpointe           6       11         13          21         51
 
Brophy's Big 3 - John Shumate - 14pts, stuck with Waddy the entire night - Thanasi Pantagiotakopoulos - 13 pts, excellent ball handling skills - Kyle Westfall - 10 pts, outstanding effort
 
Salpointe's Big 3 - Chris Denny - 24 pts, good play down low - Trey Clarkson - 12 pts, good effort - Daniel Waddy - 10 pts, fouled out with 3:17 left in the game.

February !, 2003

Shadow Mountain Topples Brophy in Thriller

A great turnout at Brophy for this 5a Desert Valley Region showdown between Shadow Mountain and Brophy.  The Shadow Mountain fans were quite enthusiastic from the get-go and their team got behind them.  Everyone knows that if Shadow Mountain hit their 3s, which they take about 357 of them in one game, then they will most likely win.  Tonight, they hit their 3s.

The first quarter began with Shadow controlling the ball from the tip and setting up their offense which focuses on the three-pointer. Both teams were scoreless for about the first 3:30 and it look like the two teams were in for a long night. Shadow Mtn. finally scored (a three) and made it 3-0.  Brophy got into major foul trouble in the first quarter, committing enough fouls to put Shadow Mountain in the bonus nearing the end of the first.  To add to the Broncos woes, they couldn't hit a shot if their life depended on it.  The first quarter ended with the score 16-9, Shadow Mountain Matadors.

On to the second quarter where the Broncos woes continued, much to the dislike of Head Coach Mark Granger.  Although Brophy was able to start making their shots, a strong effort from Ladi Makinde and Kenny Whitis for Shadow Mountain kept the Matadors on top. The second quarter ended with the score 41-29, Shadow Mountain.

A delightful halftime show was put on by the Xavier College Prep Pom Squad who will be competing in the 5A State Tournament, this weekend I believe, they looked and preformed stupendously.

The third quarter began and dragged along.  Neither team would hit double digit scoring in this quarter and Broph finally outscored Shadow Mountain in a quarter, 9-8.  Enough about the third quarter, no one really pays attention to the third anyway, its the fourth quarter that matters, and tonight is a testament to that fact.  The third ended with Shadow Mountain on top 49-38.

The fourth quarter began and the Broncos looked rejuvenated, they cut the lead down to around eight, but Shadow held strong and kept it up.  The Matadors were up 10 with around four minutes left, now things would get exciting.  The Broncos valiantly tried to comeback, but were thwarted everytime.  Then, with 3:32 left in the fourth, Shadow Mountain's Josh Van Gundy fouled out.  Brophy took advantage and narrowed the lead.  Down eight with 2:00 on the clock, the Broncos went into "clutch mode" whereas the Matadors went into "make our free throws or we're done" mode.  Note: this was the LONGEST two minutes ever! The Matadors made their free throws, going 11 of 20 in the fourth quarter.  Tough defense by the Broncos cut the lead down to two, but Shadow's clutch free throw shooting kept it a two possession game.  A late three by Brophy's Jake Lewis cut the lead again, but it was not enough, Shadow increased the lead to four with :06 seconds left and Thanasi Panagiotakopoulos' three with :01 second left wasn't enough, and the Matadors went on to victory, 70-69. Another note: The two minutes may have been long, but it was also one of the most exciting two minutes ever.  Anyone who missed this game, missed a great comeback by the Broncos, unfortunately failing to comeback all the way, and an exciting finish.  Brophy will play the #1 Tucson SalPointe Lancers tomorrow (saturday) at 5pm, @ Brophy. 

Brophy                  9           20          9          31           69 
Shadow Mtn.       16          25          8          21           70

Brophy's Big 3 - Gerad Punch 16pts, quality play again from Punch - Jake Lewis 13pts, late three almost did it - Billy Robb 13pts, outstanding effort by this Brophy junior.

Shadow's Big 3 - Ladi Makinde 18pts, great game/effort by Makinde - Kenny Whitis 16pts, solid from the foor - Race Brown 10pts, solid all around game tonight.

January 31, 2003

Preview: Shadow Mountain Matadors @ Brophy Broncos

Friday, January 31st - Brophy College Preparatory - Tonight's 5A Desert Valley Region showdown between Brophy and Shadow Mountain should be a good one.  Brophy has the series advantage having won at Shadow Mountain 53-43 earlier this year on January 14th.  In that game Brophy's Gerad Punch scored 14 points and the Broncos were without John Shumate. Shadow's Kyle Meschnark had 12 and Josh Van Gundy was held to 5 points in the Matadors loss.  Brophy is undefeated at home this year (correct me if I'm wrong) and Shadow Mountain is 3-5 on the road this year.  The Broncos hold the advantage with home court and boasts a 13-4 record and a #9 ranking in the Power Rankings.  Shadow Mountain could cause Brophy some problems however, region games are always unpredictable. Shadow holds a 6-10 record and a #29 ranking.  For Shadow Mountain to win Van Gundy needs to contribute more than 5 points and Ladi Makinde needs to step it up.  It will be different for SM because now Shumate is back in the lineup for Brophy. Expect a good one.

AFIREINSIDE


January 28. 2003

Northwest Community Christian Easily Defeats Bourgade Catholic

Being my first 2A game in a while I had forgotten how much different the atmosphere is from a 4A or 5A game. The bleachers (only on one side of the gym) were at about 60% capacity and there wasn't much noise or cheering from either section. The first quarter started out smoothly for both BCHS and NWCC as both were able to set up their offense and work out plays.  NWCC was unable to stop the outside shooting of Tony Santana and Quinton Bellamy's quickness to the basket. Conversely, Bourgade was unable to stop the inside game of NWCC.  Bourgade's Brandon Pickett went down in the first quarter and didn't return from what looked like a sprained/rolled ankle. At the end of the first quarter the score was 16-14 in favor of NWCC and it look like the fans were in store for a close game. (or so everyone though)

The second quarter started and NWCC started to pick apart Bourgade, slowly increasing their lead.  Santana's outside shot seemed to go cold from that point on and Bourgade would never get closer than that 16-14 two-point deficit in the first.  Halftime came and Northwest had increased their lead to 36-25.

The third quarter started with NWCC on fire! Northwest went on a tear, increasing their lead to as many as 19 points in the third. Bourgade looked like they didn't want to be there and they were slow to get back on defense.  NWCC scored 5 easy layups in a row, just throwing the ball down the court because the Bourgade defense failed to get back fast enough. Rick Hoffman and Ryan Hoffner picked apart the Golden Eagles' defense and at the end of the third quarter the score was NWCC 50 - Bourgade 36.
 
The fourth quarter went by slowly for the Golden Eagles. Shots wouldn't fall, defense wasn't up to par, turnovers. With about two minutes left Bourgade's head coach threw in the towel and put the bench into the game. Bourgade's star players, Bellamy and Santana, didn't play to their potential tonight, often choosing to take acrobatic layups that would miss instead of going up strong for the easy two and possibly a foul. The final score was 66-50 in favor of NWCC. Bourgade was downright outplayed tonight by the Crusaders of Northwest Community Christian.  With the loss Bourgade moves to 8-11(i think) and tonight's game was a testament to how inconsistent this Golden Eagles' team is.  NWCC moves to 10-5 (not sure) with the win tonight and will play Canyon State on Friday, January 31st.
 
Bourgade        14     11     11      14           50
NWCC            16     20     14      16           66
 
Bourgade's Big 3 - Tony Santana 15 pts, Quinton Bellamy 11 pts, Carlos Guzman 8pts, played well off the bench.
 
NWCC's Big 3 - Rick Hoffman 11pts, Ryan Hoffner 17pts, Ramsey Schantz 9pts.

2A Preview: Northwest Community Christian vs. Bourgade Catholic

Tuesday, January 28th - NWCC - This game could turn out to be an outstanding game IF terribly inconsistent Bourgade Catholic brings their "A" game.  Bourgade (8-10?) needs to have their usual top two, Quinton Bellamy and Tony Santana, play at their usual level and Rabbanni FurQuann needs to play well also.  Bourgade lost earlier in the year to NWCC 61-55, Bellamy had 20 points, but Santana and FurQuann combined for 17 and Bourgade couldn't stop NWCC's Rick Hoffman who had 24.  NWCC (9-5?)  is coming off of a 65-54 win over Phoenix Christian and have won four of their last five.  Bourgade has won two straight, one at Phoenix Christian and a 90-55 thrashing of Canyon State, they have won three of their last four.  Look forward to a good game tonight at NWCC.

AFIREINSIDE

January 25, 2003

Deer Valley Avenges Two Earlier Losses, Downs Goldwater

Friday, January 24th - Goldwater High School - Anything could have happened in today's game, both teams were coming in with enthusiasm, both were on winning streaks, and both sides had a multitude of fans screaming for either team.  Today, the luck would go to the SkyHawks of Deer Valley High School. 

The game started and both teams looked ready to go, both played solid to begin with and both defenses looked to be up for the challenge tonight, but Deer Valley jumped ahead early thanks in part to their full court pressure for the first and other parts in the first quarter and to their big star, Lawrence Hill, who showcased his outside shot by hitting two 3s. The "Dawgs" (GHS) tried to scrap their way back into it, but only managed nine points in the first quarter.  The quarter ended with the score 16-9 in Deer Valley's favor. 

The second quarter began and the SkyHawks implimented their pressure once again, but the Bulldogs were able to draw some fouls and were able to outscore Deer Valley this quarter (15-12). Goldwater was able to draw some offensive fouls on the SkyHawks, which was another factor that led to their being down by only four points. Jeremy Brooks and Lawrence Hill led the SkyHawks with 6 points each at the break and Scott Ellis led the Bulldogs with 6 as well.  The score at the half was 28-24 for Deer Valley.

The third quarter began and the SkyHawks full court pressure defense got to Goldwater again! Deer Valley went up by more than ten in the third riding the back of Hill, Brooks, and the scrappy Colton Campbell, who receieved a technical foul with 2:11 to go in the third for accidentally (at least it looked accidental) tripping and taking down a Goldwater player.  Campbell finished with 5 points on 2 of 3 shooting, 1 of 1 from the line, and 6 rebounds.  The Bulldogs' Ed Hasbrouck got into foul trouble late in the third quarter as the Skyhawks began to extend upon their lead.  At the end of the third it was 44-34 Deer Valley.
 
As the fourth quarter began both sides of the gym were full of energy and so were the players.  Deer Valley more so than Goldwater. The Bulldogs already being down by ten, went down by more and their spirits seemed to be crushed. They made a valiant effort at a comeback, cutting it to 8 nearly half way through, but the SkyHawks were just too much and Goldwater's stars were all having lackluster games.  Inconsistency could be the downfall of the Bulldogs.  The fourth quarter ended with the score 64-49 Deer Valley.  Deer Valley moves to 7-10 on the season and Goldwater drops to 11-7.
 
Goldwater           9           15          10           15          49
Deer Valley        15          12          16           20           64
 
Deer Valley's Big 3 - Lawrence Hill - 11 pts, 6 boards, 2 of 2 3ptFGs - Christian Polk - 11 pts, 5 of 5 FTs, 3 of 8 FGs - Jeremy Brooks - 13pts, 5 of 7 FGs, 3 of 5 FTs
 
Goldwater's Big 3 - Scott Ellis - 6 pts, 2 of 2 FGs, 2 of 4 FTs - Ed Hasbrouck - 9 pts, 5 of 6 FGs, 2 of 3 FGs, 4 fouls - Allan Fleming - 8 pts, 3 of 3 FGs, 2 steals, 1 board
 
Surprise of the Night : Goldwater's Dan Klemme, after scoring 13 against Mtn. Ridge on Tuesday, January 21st, he scores no points tonight on 0 of 2 FGs, 0 of 3 3PtFGs, with 1 board and 3 fouls. Gotta cut him slack though, it's his second game back after injury. 
 
Up next for the Goldwater Bulldogs - the Ironwood Eagles (4-13) (1-1 against GHS)
Up next for the Deer Valley SkyHawks - the Peoria Panthers (4-10) (0-1 against DVHS)

AFIREINSIDE

January 21, 2003

Brophy Broncos Pull Out Win Versus Archrival Knights

Tuesday, January 21st - Brophy College Preparatory - As I walked into the gym at tipoff I had to make my way to the 2nd deck of bleachers seeing how the gym was near capacity.  The Brophy side having the slight edge in attendance, being the home team.  The St. Mary's fans seemed more energetic to start the game and their enthusiasm seemed to fuel Levi Lopez and the St. Mary's Knights to a well played first quarter.  Lopez scored the first five points of the game and made it 5-0 in the Knights favor.  Brophy couldn't buy a shot in the first missing everything from 3s to mid-range jumpers to free throws. The Broncos were only able to muster 3 points in the entire first quarter.  Thanks to their defense they only allowed the Knights to score 10, St.Mary's had a good start, Brophy a extremely bad start (offensively) and at the end of the first it was St. Mary's on top 10-3.

The second quarter began with Brophy coming out ready to play.  The Broncos were able to claw back by drawing fouls and converting their free throws, and finally making shots.  The defense held strong again as they only allowed the Knights to score eight points in the second half.  The Broncos offense was beginning to come alive behind the smooth ball handling of Thanasi Panagiotakopoulos and the sharp shooting of Kevin Schneider.  The first half ended with Brophy climbing their way to the lead 23-18 thanks in part to a twenty point 2nd quarter.

The third quarter was all Brophy as the Broncos came out with more enthusiasm than the previous two quarters.  The defense was especially stellar during this quarter, allowing the Knights offense only three points in the third quarter.  Things kept going well for the Broncos as they were able to go up by as much as 16 points in the third.  Things got interesting with 1:41 to play in the third as the Knight's Darrell Jordan and the Broncos' Brian McDonnel scrambled for a loose ball, tying the ball up for a jump.  Words were exchanged and the next thing you see is Darrell Jordan putting McDonnel in a head-lock from behind.  Players, referees and security personel rushed to the court as the first few rows of the BCP student section looked antsy to start something.  As the players (Jordan and McDonnel) were being ejected, the student sections began chanting back and forth, the St.Mary's side was chanting something incoherent while the BCP side chanted "scoreboard" (Brophy being up by a large margin at the time). The third quarter ended with the score in Brophy's favor 42-21.

The fourth quarter began with the two teams exchanging fouls and free throws.  Then Levi Lopez began to take over and try to bring the Knights back into it.  The closest St. Mary's ever got was 49-40 with under 5 left in the game.  The Broncos were able to hold on to the victory and bragging rights for now as they went on to defeat the Knights of St.Mary's 55-44.

Brophy          3           20         19          13            55
St.Mary's     10          8           3            23            44
 
Brophy's Big 3 - Kevin Schneider 14pts, shooting touch was on after 1st Q - Gerad Punch 11pts, a dominant presence as always - Billy Robb 8pts, great on the boards
 
St.Mary's Big 3 - Levi Lopez 25pts, 3pt touch was on fire - Darrell Jordan 6pts, solid until being ejected in 3rd - Tim Fahrendorf  5pts, has played better


AFIREINSIDE

January 17, 2003

Brophy Easily Defeats the Rattlers of North Canyon

Friday, January 17th - North Canyon High School - I arrived on the North Canyon campus early enough to catch the tail end of the Brophy Prep - North Canyon Boys' JV game.  If you were a NCHS fan, the last 44.5 seconds of this game would provide you with more excitement than the North Canyon varsity team could in 4 quarters.  With 44.5 seconds left, BCP was leading 44-43, the Rattlers took their time (it was their possession) and scored on a layup, making it 45-44 (NCHS) with around 14 seconds left.  After a timeout, Brophy's Rodney Brown would throw the ball away with 9 seconds, a long inbound to North Canyon's Daniel Hand ran down the clock to 4 seconds, Hand was fouled, making the 2nd of two free throws and increasing the lead to 46-44 (NCHS).  Brophy inbounded the ball to speedy sophomore point Rodney Brown, Brown let go a half court shot, that.....you guessed it...went in, making the score 47-46 Broncos victory.

Now onto the varsity game.  The gym was full of energy as the game started.  The first quarter would have made any coach who stresses defense proud, both teams began defending solidly.  Good defending means two things, poor shots or very few shots, the second is what happened in the first quarter tonight.  After one period of play, the Brophy Broncos led 10-7.

The second quarter started with Brophy continuing to be solid on defense, a staple of Coach Mark Granger's basketball philosophy, and North Canyon beginning to play sloppily on the offensive side.  The game turned into the "Gerad Punch Show" as the Brophy senior and Furman University signee turned in 20 of his team-leading 22 points in the first half on 8 of 12 shooting from inside the arch, 1 of 3 from beyond, and 3 of 6 from the line. The first half ended with the score Brophy 29 - North Canyon 18.

The third quarter was much like the first except in this case it wasn't a lack of shots by both teams, but poor shot selection.  The third quarter dragged along and finally ended with the Broncos outscoring the Rattlers 16-14 and the score in Brophy's favor was 45-32.

The fourth and final quarter began and went by relatively smooth with both teams playing "ok" ball, Brophy playing below their potential and North Canyon playing a little better than how a team who was 3-11, 0-3 coming into the game was expected to play.  North Canyon's Jon Horn fouled out with 3:19 left in the game and 0 points.  Brophy began putting some of it's bench players in a little over half way through the final quarter.  North Canyon star Dane Dodd fouled out with :19 seconds left in the game and no hope of a comeback for the Rattlers, Dodd finished with 8 on 1 of 4 field goal shooting, 2 of 4 from beyond the arch.  The game finally concluded with the final score Brophy Prep 61 - North Canyon High School  43.
 

Brophy                  10         19      16       16        61

North Canyon        7         11       14        11       43

Brophy's Big 3 Gerad Punch 22pts, 6 boards (senior) - Thanasi Paniagiotakopoulos  14 pts, 4 steals (junior) - Michael Strittmater 7 pts, 4 boards (sophomore)

North Canyon's Big 3 - Dane Dodd 8pts, fouled out with :19 seconds remaining in game - Kyle Lang 4 pts, Chris Kirtland 6 pts

AFIREINSIDE

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