Simons' late layup off a steal lifts Summer Trojan cagers
Published 7:43 pm, Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Senior J.D. Simons was the hero for the Weston boys basketball team Sunday night.
Simons intercepted a pass at midcourt and laid it in with 1:21 remaining to give Weston a 29-28 victory over Joel Barlow in the DeSantis Basketball Academy Summer Basketball League at Christian Heritage School.
"It's like an interception in football, you see it and if you time it right, it will happen," Simons said.
Barlow still had a chance to win it but the Summer Trojans hung tough and didn't allow a shot to preserve the lead.
Weston was mired in a defensive battle all game in which offense was at a premium with both teams missing many layups. Poor free throw shooting also hurt the Summer Trojans, which gave the Summer Falcons an opportunity to go into the half with an 11-8 lead.
Experience, or the lack thereof, hurt Weston when it came to establishing an offensive flow. Senior tri-captain lefty point guard Max Molinsky was the only player on the floor who has vast varsity experience. Molinsky is a two-time All-SWC Honorable Mention selection and is a two-year starter.
More InformationFact box
"It was a struggle but we hung in there," Molinsky said.
Simons was a backup who saw limited action last year on varsity. The other three players who took the floor for the Summer Trojans, junior Walker Edelman and sophomores Morgan Rosemann and Pascal Arvoy, either played JV or freshman basketball last year.
"We're practicing more than usual and we're coming along well," said Molinsky, in reference to the team's twice a week captains' practice over the summer. "We're coming along well and a lot of kids are working hard and playing summer ball."
Molinsky (12 points, one rebound, four assists, six steals, three forced turnovers) ignited Weston with some timely layups, one off a midcourt steal and three off feeds from his teammates. He also set up Arvoy, Simons and Edelman for easy layups and made things happen on defense.
"We attacked the basket as much as possible," Molinsky said. "I tried to press them as much as possible. It's all about determination. Our defense has improved and J.D. was a defensive stud today."
Simons (11 points, three rebounds, one assist, five steals, one forced turnover) had a few big steals and scored 10 points in the second half, six off of layups. His football toughness was integral for his winning many battles in the trenches, which led to steals.
Arvoy (four points, five rebounds, one assist, one steal, two forced turnovers) and Edelman (two points, five rebounds, one steal, two forced turnovers, one tieup) played well inside. Rosemann (four rebounds, one assist, two steals, five forced turnovers) was instrumental in bottlingw up the Summer Falcons.
After Simons hit a jumper to tie it 18-18, Barlow went on an 8-1 run to take a 26-19 lead with 6:46 left. Arvoy's steal, which his outlet pass led to Molinsky's basket, started to turn the tide. Molinsky hit a jumper and set up Edelman's layup inside. Simons went coast-to-coast for a layup off a steal to give Weston a 27-26 lead.
Barlow responded and took a 28-27 lead and had a chance to stall before Simons came up big.
"It wasn't pretty ," Molinsky said. "We had young guys in the lineup and we tried to focus on defense. Defense wins games, which helped since our shots weren't falling."