Tuesday, January 18, 2011

How the Game is supposed to be played!

Alexis Govan took her sweet time to tie up her ankle braces. She was exhausted. She just dove on the floor and caused yet another jump ball call from the refs. She was already 35 points into one of the best performances in recent San Antonio basketball history. She was trying to find a way. A way to overcome her rival and arch nemesis, Erica Donovan. Donovan had just hit yet another crucial bucket and her Jay squad was now in command. The battle between Steven's Govan and John Jay's Donovan was legendary! No exaggeration needed. The battle between these two teams, these two players, these two coaches was a memorable one.

The match up for supremacy of 27-5A was epic for a number of reasons. John Jay stalwart coach, Mike Floyd(former UTSA asst. coach) and his 600 plus wins vs. the new kid on the block in the energetic and bright Stevens coach, Anissa Hastings(University of Texas star and Sam Houston great). The 6 degrees of separation was in effect.

Annisa Hastings coaches summer ball for TeamXpress. TeamXpress founder/director is University of Texas and San Antonio legend Clarissa Davis-Wrightsil. A young Clarissa Davis once scored 75 points in a high school game for John Jay while playing for a young coach named Mike Floyd. Alexis Govan and Erica Donovan both play for TeamXpress and have been in battle with and against each hundreds of times over the last two years.

Stevens starting point guard is Nicole Salazar. Nicole's dad is the head coach of his own club team, NS Mustangs. The starting power forward for Jay is Vanessa Orr. The assistant coach for the NS Mustangs is the father of Vanessa Orr.

Jay freshman Antania "T" Newton is reportedly the future step sister of Stevens sophomore, Elexus Allen. They both play summer ball for Cavin Leonard's SA Comets.

One of the elite club teams in San Antonio over the last few years has been the "Lady Mustangs" led by Jay star sophomore Destiny Amezquita's father, Danny. One of their main rivals are the previously mentioned "NS Mustangs".

All this familiarity apparently bred contempt. The game was physical and intense. The game was an exhibition in athleticism and execution. Jay's Aleeyah Harris showed why she has the upside to be a great player. Stevens' Alexis Sendejo displayed why she is one of the supreme shooters in the city. Stevens' Elexus Allen and Jay's KiKi Taylor proved that they are two of the best defenders in the city. Jay's Destiny Amezquita showed glimpses of how great she will be when she recovers 100% from her knee injury. Steven's Amber Johnson made all of us learn her name. The game was remarkable, but nothing told the tell of the game like the battle between between the leading candidates for MVP of the city, Erica Donovan and Alexis Govan.

The NC State bound Donovan finished with 41 points. The Western Kentucky bound Govan gave the opposition 38 points. I changed my opinion on city MVP so many times during the game that I felt like a flip flopping politician.

I have admittedly been a little depressed this season. The 2010 class spoiled me. The game was played a certain way and the players treated the game with a certain respect. Olivia Patterson locking up full court making opposing guards panic. Jessica Kuster snatching a defensive board, out letting the ball and sprinting past the defense for an acrobatic lay up. Meighan Simmons scowling at the opposing fans while going for 30 plus. Len'Nique Brown running the offense like a Broadway orchestra leader. CeCe Harper putting her team on her back and shredding the defense with pin point passes and exciting finishes. KiKi Ageous pro-hopping and Jackie Edwards with the lefty jumper. I missed them; until tonight.

Donovan and Govan made me happy. They made 'The Game' happy. To see two players that refused to lose was refreshing. They willed their teams with three point bombs, strong forays to the rack, tough offensive put backs. Everything! They did it all. E.D. won. She led her Jay squad to the victory lap. Govan was special. Donovan was just a little more special. I'm floating. We all should be. The city is in good hands. We are continuing on our rise. Thank you Govan! Thank you Donovan! Great job Stevens. Greater job Jay! Final Score, Jay 78-71 on OT. I only wish that they played again tomorrow. And the next day... And the next day!