Spartans start strong

To the new building (within a year or 2) at St. Michael-Albertville for the home opener vs #6AAA Orono. A battle of old fashioned warriors here with Knights hosting Spartans.  This would be hard to pick in a mascot bracket.  I like the setup in the new gym better as its more cozy.  Should be a great venue for sections.  Quality concessions too with the Dominos pizza.  St. Thomas Academy in the building scouting for the game vs Orono in next weekend's Breakdown Tipoff Classic.  A sighting of the coolest (and slickest) guy in the WIAC as well.  Quality tunes on the public address using the Ric Flair entrance for their home intros.  But that brings us to the

Song of the Night
Chumbawumba - Tubthumping (played during a timeout)

Game Time
No Joe Carpenter in the starting lineup tonight for STMA but he was sporting a freshly cut mohawk.  Orono jumps on the Knights right away.  Jordan Smith for 3 and a putback.  2 turnovers ends with another Smith 3.  10-0 only 1:15 into the game.  Timeout STMA.  Carpenter enters at 14:36 with 3 other subs.  Meanwhile Smith continues the onslaught with another 3 and an assist.  Brady Wohler with a second steal fora  3 point play as his points came off of steals and putbacks.  25-7 Orono at the 10:24 mark on their 5th triple of the half.  Carpenter nails a 3 to finish a 8-0 Knights run.  25-15 Orono at the 7:42 and Orono wants time.  Smith counters with 2 more bombs as he scores 8 in a row to blow away the last run.  Then 2 more triples including a Kyle Mileusnic triple to beat the halftime buzzer. 41-22 Orono at the half.  Smith 19 points, Carpenter 12 for STMA.  Orono with 9 triples in the half as they torched the nets.

Smith with a another long range dart and a steal for 2 free throws.  Add 2 more hoops from Smith and Wohler and the lead swells to 54-27 with 13:10 left.  The rest is pretty elementary as the lead never gets under 19.  Orono wins 78-57 but it could have been much much worse. 

For St. Michael-Albertville, Joe Carpenter leads the way with a 17 and 12 double double.  He's definitely an elite level athlete in the 2011 class.  The nuances of the game are what he continues to work on.  6-13 shooting and 2 steals and 4 blocks.  He had the ball stripped, chased the play down and blocked the shot attempt into the bleachers.  Should have been a goaltend but a crazy athletic play and credit for the hustle.  The Knights only got 11 total points from shooters Michael Wiese and Michael Mooney.  Wiese 1-10 from 3 and he had good looks.  Knights were 5-24 total from deep.  1 team hot, 1 team cold and the results showed.  6'6 junior center Herbert Tarpeh (rhymes with Mel Torme or Marisa Tomei if you prefer) with 18 points in the JV game against a undersized Orono squad but he came in for the last 5 minutes had 2 quick assists and 2 buckets during that time and gave great effort.

For Orono, Jordan Smith with 19 of his 26 points in the first half.  6 triples on the night.  I also had him for 9 rebounds.  Defensively they were able to use their traps to force 19 turnovers.  Then in the halfcourt, 5 different players made 3s.  Brady Wohler wasn't one of them surprisingly but he hit the offensive glass and got steals for 14 points.  When they shoot it like that, Orono will be very tough to beat. 

X and O Segment
I liked what appeared to be the STMA secondary break.  2-3 set.  Ball gets reversed across the top to the trailing big.  Post goes across and wing sets second screen for other wing to come all the way across.  On the catch, its triangle screen the screener action with the 2nd wing continuing across to screen the post who comes back to the ball.  The trailer then screens down on that for a look at the top.  Simple and effective and that same action was seen a ton in the halfcourt as well so it may be a regular set.  They had good looks from this that just didn't go in. 

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