Chemeketa hoopsters Chill Clark, 91-82
BY IAN GERIG
Aggressiveness can win or lose you games, and sometimes it can make things difficult.
The Chemeketa men’s basketball team gotits first win of the season on Nov. 25, beating the visitors from Clark College 91-82 despite giving up 18 turnovers to the opposing Penguins.
With the Storm in the lead 11-9, Keith Bowen Jr., Chemeketa’s first-year guard, picked up his second foul of the night and was subbed off to avoid foul trouble.
If he were to remain in the game at that point, Bowen would have had to make an adjustment.
“Being aggressive is the style I play. I just had to tone my aggressiveness down a bit and be a bit less touchy,” he said.
Even with Bowen out, the Storm’s game plan remained unchanged.
One thing about this team is that we feel we have a lot of depth. It’s the defense that gets us going,” David Abdehalden, the Storm’s head coach, said.
Bowen “came out and tried to give us that energy. When it wasn’t there, we went to someone else. We just kept on going.”
Midway through the first, with Clark maintaining a single-digit lead, the Storm would string together a trail of buckets that made the score 41-32. But the Storm allowed a 9-0 Penguin run that tied the game going into halftime.
Bowen said it was just a breakdown of basic fundamentals that caused the late Penguin surge.
“It was our rotations. We just weren’t communicating” he said.
In the second half, despite taking an early lead, Clark would not give up, repeatedly rallying back to tie the game.
It was right after one of these rallies that the Storm put things into high gear, however.
With the score tied at 66, Chemeketa connected on back-to-back three-point shots to take the lead – one the team would not surrender.
The Penguins kept on pushing, keeping the lead within 5 points for the next 8 minutes.
Storm freshman Cameron Lyon then hit the last of his 5 three-point attempts on the night with 2:06 remaining to make the score 82-74.
Ten seconds later, Bowen would finally seal the game, stealing the ball from a Penguin guard and racing the length of the floor to push the lead to 10, and his personal total to 21.
The Storm would then hold on for the win.
“I think we improve every day,” Bowen said. “Our intensity gets better, our communication gets better, and our teamwork gets better.
“We played as a team. On offense, we swung the ball around. And on defense, even with the breakdowns, we kept our heads in the game”.
While Abdehalden was pleased with his team’s play, he also said there was room for improvement, most notably in the team’s rotation assignments and free-throw shooting.
“We can always get better everywhere. Our offensive execution was spotty, and we turned the ball over, but we beat a quality team tonight,” he said.
“Our rotations weren’t where they needed to be, and where they should be especially a few weeks from now, but I thought for the most part we did a pretty good job.”
Chemeketa is now 1-2 on the season with its next home game scheduled for Dec. 2 against the Willamette JV team.
Next on the schedule is the annual alumni game, which starts at 5 p.m. on Dec. 6.
The Storm will play a variety of tournaments throughout the winter break. The team’s first game at the start of the winter term will be Jan. 5 against the Pacific J.V. team.