Men's Basketball |
Oct. 14, 2008
CINCINNATI – The University of Cincinnati’s two basketball programs started last season very similar. Their seasons had its ups and downs, but many on the team and fans alike looked forward to the 2008-09 basketball season with the hopes of fresh talent coming in and the return of injured stars. The Bearcat faithful got a small preview of what they can look forward to on Saturday afternoon at the Bearcats Basketball Fan Jam.
The afternoon began with emcee Dan Hoard introducing the teams to the fans, and there was an immediate notice to how much depth was being added overall.
The ladies took the floor for a 3-point contest against four fans. Kahla Roudebush and Jill Stephens showed off their sharp three-point shooting. Coach J. Kelley Hall, beginning his second season on the Bearcats’ sideline, ended the women’s portion with a few words for the audience. The women’s schedule highlights a home contestant with crosstown rival, Xavier, and BIG EAST conference games with Louisville and Connecticut.
The men’s team took the floor for warm-up drills led by Dave Andrews, and then divided up for a 20-minute scrimmage. The Black Team consisted of Branden Miller, Steve Toyloy, Eddie Tyree, Deonta Vaughn, Darnell Wilks, and Mike Williams. The Red Team was Rashad Bishop, Larry Davis, Yancy Gates, Anthony McClain, and Cashmere Wright. Sophomores Kenny Belton and Alvin Mitchell along with Dion Dixon sat out of the scrimmage, but fans can look forward to them contributing during the upcoming season.
Vaughn ran the black team with the same consistency that fans have begun to expect out of the junior. He had twelve points on 4-of-10 shooting with seven assists. His play was highlighted 12 minutes into the scrimmage when he stole the ball from the red team, drove down the court, and passed it to Wilks for a dunk. The Red Team hadn’t learned their lesson because he repeated with a steal off of a Larry Davis turnover. Wright also made contributions at the guard position for the Red Team; he showed off his ability to get inside for a lay-up.
To succeed in the upcoming season, it is important for the Bearcats to have a dominant presence in the paint. The presence will be felt with eight of the 15 players being 6-6 or above. Spectators finally got a peak at the ability of Mike Williams as he battled in the paint for offensive and defensive rebounds. He ended the game with a team high four rebounds and contributed nine points. If the Black Team was the offensive power house this afternoon, then the Red team certainly was on the defense. McClain and Gates each contributed six and five rebounds, respectively.
It wasn’t the Red Team’s night because the Black Team edged them out with a 40-38 point victory, but the Red Team won the battle of the boards with a 19 to 14 edge.
Bearcat fans can look forward to an exciting season from both of the teams. You won’t want to miss a moment of the action so get your season tickets before they run out.