Saturday, April 17, 2010

OU Let's One Slip Away

Reading, MA - Origins Unknown did almost everything right this past Thursday at the Readingbowl when they took on Howse Corp. They played hard... fought tooth and nail for loose balls... made big shots... and built a lead that should have got them the win. But, in heart-breaking fashion, OU squandered a 7 point lead with less than 1:30 remaining and gave up a 3-pointer at the buzzer which forced overtime. In the OT, OU ran out of time and ultimately succumbed to fatigue, losing 71-67. But, of course - win or lose, we booze.

The loss followed an earlier 24-point victory over the Warriors in the previous week. In that game, OU didn't play their most fluid basketball, but did enough to beat the veteran Warriors bunch by a safe margin despite another unbelievable effort by their scrappy veteran point guard, and twin towers in the middle.

But this Howse loss will sting the OU crew for a bit. Howse put a deep team together for the game, which was in stark contrast to OU who waited until just after 7:00 for their fourth player to arrive.

The shorthandedness didn't seem to effect OU during most of the game though, and they battled on every possession. All four OUrs were able to score when the opportunity presented itself, and though the game wasn't pretty - it was great competition. There were good matchups all over the court, as James "Stretch" Hogan IV and Jay Howse matched up, Danger Dan Fisher and Cap'n Mike chased Nick and Rusty all over the court (and vice versa), and Shu battled Howse big man Gage on both ends.

As the game wore on, OU actually asserted themselves better without the bench and seemed to have a better pace overall. But, that pace did finally catch up to them as the game wore on and their offensive sets started to slow. Luckily, OU was still finding ways to score either through the air, or with Hogan cutting.

After building the 7 point lead, they were looking good for the win, but it wasn't meant to be... They quickly chopped down the lead, and even though Cap'n made 2 free throws with 8 seconds left, Howse created enough room for Nick to nail a 3 from the top of the key and force the OT.

The ending was crazy, but not quite like this game - and if you think the white team is celebrating their win - they were... for a moment.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

New OU

Reading, MA - A new season is here, and with it comes a slightly new look from the old OU bunch. Gone for the moment is the middle-eating court presence of big man Dan Rasanen, and inserted into the line-up in his place is sniper Paul "Z" Zermani. So, while OU now goes to battle with no one over 6'3", we also have the team speed to make games uncomfortable for certain opponents, as we usher in a new Loyola Marymount 1990-style run-and-gun offense.

The team's guidelines are simple:

1. The first 5 minutes of the game don't matter. There is a good chance we'll be down early as the other team pounds the ball into the post, and we take off our warm-ups and loosen up the old bones.
2. We don't care if the opponents score.... well, we do care, but it won't deter us from the way we want to play. It doesn't matter if the ball goes in, because our goal is to collect the ball after a make or on a rebound, and push it back up the court in almost every situation. At the end of most games, we'll hit more threes, and get more fast breaks than our opponents - which should make up for any defensive lapses.
3. There are no bad open shots. If you have a look, and you're in range - you have the green light (Who's got two thumbs and the green light to shoot when they cross half court?? THIS GUY! And YOU TOO!) That being said, with a team that can shoot and slash and score like this, the extra pass will usually lead to an even MORE open shot for someone else.

In OU's first game back for the session - Z, Cap'n Mike, Shuter Patel, Danger Dan Fisher and Jonesy took on a new Ravens team, which was put together with a 6'5" big, very large man, a decent 6'4" wing player and 3 competent guards. OU was tested early as the Ravens jumped out to an early lead behind strong post-play and some cold OU shooting. But, in the blink of an eye - and about 12 threes later - OU was in control and the new run-and-gun strategy was on full display. Each OU member made it difficult for their Ravens counterpart to guard them effectively and OU ended up cruising to their first win of the year, 93-77.

Next week, OU will take on the Warriors in their second test of the session.