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Basketball gamer

Discussion in 'Writers' Workshop' started by Leedsunited123, Dec 20, 2012.

  1. Leedsunited123

    Leedsunited123 New Member

    Been stringing for a year and a half, really trying to get better but am struggling a bit. Any help for this noob would be appreciated.

    -- After struggling to a 2-20 finish last season with a host of underclassmen, the St. Luke's boys basketball team was hopeful this term would see the benefits of last year's rebuilding campaign.

    Consider Wednesday's win a massive step in the right direction.

    Center Aminenye Lakoju scored all 12 of his points in a second-half rally as the Storm blasted King 73-56 on Wednesday afternoon, surpassing their win total from last year while earning their second FAA win of the season after failing to register one in 2011-12.

    "It's a big win because it gives us more confidence that what we are doing is moving us in the right direction," St. Luke's coach Brian Kriftcher said. "To come out here and execute the way did in the second half is huge. Nobody wants to work hard and fall on the downside every time."

    Entering the second half trailing 30-25, the broad shouldered and agile Lakoju took charge at both ends of the court with a series of blocks and putbacks. Although he was hampered by foul trouble during the spurt, the junior managed to stay on the court long enough to cap a 19-10 run to give the Storm (3-4) a 46-40 lead with nine minutes left in the game.

    "We are trying to manage his minutes," Kriftcher said. "He's newer to the game, but he's going to be a handful for anybody. He can't be a handful if he's sitting on the bench, but our assistant coaches are doing an outstanding job of managing his minutes."

    Lakoju's play energized his teammates, who began creating turnovers and finishing at the basket with regularity. Elijah Holyfield led the Storm with 22 and Jalen Latta scored 14 of his 16 points in the second half.

    "Our coaches told us what we had to do," said Storm captain Sean Cullinane, who scored 15 points. "The first three minutes of the second half are always the most important and we did all the things we needed to do to go on a run."

    The hosts would never let the Vikings (6-3) back into the game, who continuously shot themselves in the foot with missed free throws and turnovers down the stretch. St. Luke's didn't reach the foul line until 9:57 left in the second half, but went 14-for-20 to secure the win. King went 16-of-29 (9-of-20 in the second half) from the line.

    "We needlessly turned the ball over; it's sort of been an Achilles' heel of ours all year long," King coach Greg Dobbs said. "If we rebound and don't turn the basketball over we seem to be a good team. We unraveled pretty quickly today. Missing free throws always contributes. There are things that bring momentum and things that kill momentum and St. Luke's clearly got theirs in the second half."

    The first half was controlled mostly by King standout Drew Sawyer. The senior, who scored 19 of the Vikings 30 first-half points and finished the game with 28, made back-to-back 3s to help his team to a 26-18 advantage. King's aggressiveness on both offense and defense provided a host of problems for the Storm, but it was the hosts who made the right adjustments to secure the victory.

    We made a couple of corrections at halftime," Kriftcher said. "We played tougher on defense for sure and rebounded better, but mostly against their 3-2 (zone defense), we moved the ball better on offense."

    Both teams paid tribute to the Newtown tragedy prior to tip-off, as a moment of silence was observed while the coaching staffs and players held up 26 burning candles.
     
  2. the_zuniga

    the_zuniga New Member

    I'm fairly new to sports writing and to this forum, so please take anything I say with a grain of salt.

    I think the piece is really solid, but here are a few things I'd rework:

    This sentence seems a bit wordy. It would be much easier to read if "after failing to register one..." became its own sentence.

    Should be hyphenated.

    Later in the article, I'd use a different word than "continuously," because that suggests something happening without pause.

    I'd reword that sentence: "King went 16-of-29 from the line, and just 9-of-20 in the second half." This emphasizes the impact that the missed free throws had on the game.

    If you can avoid passive verbs, your writing will sound better. This one is easy to fix: "King standout .... controlled the first half."



    Those are minor things I noticed and not major issues at all. I wouldn't advise using more quotes, since you already have plenty.

    Hope this helps, and merry Christmas!
     
  3. jlee

    jlee Active Member

    Good angle. Solid gamer.

    Couple of things that came to mind:

    "Although he was hampered by foul trouble during the spurt, the junior managed to stay on the court long enough to cap a 19-10 run to give the Storm (3-4) a 46-40 lead with nine minutes left in the game." He capped it? Meaning he just scored the last two of 19 points? What did he do during the run to make this worthy of highlighting?

    "Lakoju's play energized his teammates, who began creating turnovers and finishing at the basket with regularity. Elijah Holyfield led the Storm with 22 and Jalen Latta scored 14 of his 16 points in the second half." A quote from a teammate about this "energizing" factor would have been nice to have. You supported it with stats, but since it's an intangible thing, a player saying, "Yes, that's what happened" would strengthen the story.

    Also, I'd avoid using terms like "blasted" to describe a 17-point win in lower-level hoops, but that's your call.

    Thanks for the read.

    j
     
  4. jr/shotglass

    jr/shotglass Well-Known Member

    I think your writing shows a considerable promise, too. I'm going to give you one general thing to work on. And believe me, you're not unique in this.

    Rather than seeing how many facts/ideas you can get into one sentence, how dense you can make a paragraph, simplify. Simplify.

    Short, declarative sentences. Short paragraphs. If you find yourself throwing a lot of qualifying clauses in there, stop it. One sentence, one idea. That's far from a concrete rule, but you would do well to lean more toward that concept.
     
  5. RCanady

    RCanady Guest

    Thank you for this advise. I believe I am guilty of the same thing, and will remember this rule of thumb.
     
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