Kannon and Pepperdine: UTSA 64 – Pepperdine 70
Losing leads has become a mini-trend for the Runners so far this season. This time it was because of missed shots (and free throws) and maybe bad calls by the referee. I don’t want to justify it by breaking down the reasons, either.
This is kind of weird. I’m still hungover from Thansgiving –feeling full of good food and shining with a nice glow from the best holiday of them all. With that in mind let’s go through this box score and wonder aloud what the hell happened.
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Let’s talk about our leading scorer: Kannon Burrage. He had 18 points in 29 minutes, went 6-15 from the floor including 4-8 from deep, missed four out of six freebies, grabbed a couple steals and turned it over three times. Great line. Those turnovers? They came in the most inopportune times. With time running out and the good guys needing a bucket to win it after allowing Corbin Moore to nail a game-tying three pointer (his first three of his three year career???!?!?!!) Kannon had a play ran for him. He got it at the top of the arc, dribbled, drove and …. lost the ball as he was about to pull up for a jumper. He was on at that point and had been doing really good things all game. When the offense stagnated, he would drive and make something happen. He was nailing it from outside. I was hoping he’d get a chance to win it.
Then he committed turnover number one. It happens. If you’ve played even backyard basketball you know that sometimes you just dribble it off your foot. Happens.
Overtime: How about that terrible, terrible overtime. In this game of runs, going into overtime will either carry your momentum or kill it. In this case, Pepperdine just rode their Wave of momentum to a win. Pun definitely intended because I can do that, yo.
Take a look at the play-by-play and brace yourself for some awful basketball.
Kannon had four misses (including freethrows) and two other turnovers. The back-breaker was the one at about 00:53 where he got caught under the basket and whisked it to the waiting arms of Nikolas Skouen.
Then came my favorite part of the night. I’ll explain why in a second. Caleb Willis, the winner of El Convo’s Excellence In the Art of Looking Like a Running Back award. I had been cracking on that dude all game. Officially, he wentt 1/6 from the field and made two free throws. He had a rebound and three assists and fouled four times. I was justified in wondering how he managed to finagle his way into the starting lineup and how he had the audacity to wear number 23 while being useless. Laughs were plentiful. Then he busted out his spin move/fadeaway combo to put the game at four points with :22 left to play.
Of course that dude would be the one to hit a high-degree-of-difficulty shot. Of course Moore hit that three. Of course Jeromie Hill missed like four bunnies. Of course our most aggressive, successful player went cold and fumble-prone at :10 left in regulation and maintained that low level for the rest of overtime. It was that kind of game.
— Mel Johnson has such as lazy, sweet stroke. So crazy how he can get that off. That said, where was he late? Was he not aggressive enough? I mean, he only took four shots but made both (from deep).
— We need more aggressiveness. What does that mean? It means guys who don’t just rotate the ball around looking for a good shot but go make a good shot for themselves or a teammate. I don’t know how that happens without Kannon. That dude is the only one that can break down a zone in all the ways it can be broken: shooting, driving and attacking the seams.
— I saw UTSA beat writer Dan McCarney sitting next to Jay Howard and Andy Everett at the game. Some awkwardness happened at the end of the game while the people were streaming out of the building. As we passed the those three media guys. My cousin-in-law lived in San Antonio during the nineties and listed to Jay Howard call Spurs games — as most Alamo City people have. So he was walking a little bit in front of me and so, I called out to him to get his attention to point out the former Voice of The Spurs. Well, I’m thinking he and that whole section (stat guy etc) all thought I was calling out to … Jay Howard. So when I turned back to point them out … they all were staring at me like “Who is this guy calling out my name, yo.” It was funny.
-That $11 ticket pack deal is pretty sweet.
Pepperdine has the same damn colors as UTSA.
– Cheerleaders get a D- for this game. They were wallflowers and seemed even more disinterested in the game than cheerleaders normally do. Bad look, yo. As The Woman said, “I’d rather them not be here if they are going to do that (nothing). They look like they don’t want to be here!”. Agree.
There were a whole lot of empty seats. It was only $9. I will never understand how people don’t see the value in attending college basketball games. Never.
– Still working on the new site. Stay tuned, yo.
Editor extraordinaire, UTSA grad student. Twitter