Wednesday, June 28, 2017 This Week's Paper

Taking to the Court

// Hoop Go Round a Season-starting tradition

A Tacoma tradition was reborn at Wilson High School on Nov. 26 as basketball teams from each of the five Tacoma public high schools got together for the Hoop Go Round, a series of five round-robin, 10-minute games with each school playing two games each.

“It was a good showcase for all the schools,” said tournament organizer and Wilson head coach Dave Alwert.

Early returns were very good from the level of play to the fans in attendance with past players such as Clarence Ramsey, Rockey Botts, and Steve Matzen being on the minds of many veteran fans in attendance.

Leading scorers on the night were names that will become familiar to hoop fans throughout Tacoma for the upcoming season. Mount Tahoma’s Rondie Pate and Michael Rollins led all scorers with 15 and 14 points respectively, while Lincoln’s Tre’Shaun Lexing and Dontiea Hankins from Foss each had 11, and Wilson’s Phoenix Waters and Jaiden Martin each had 10. Each coach was looking for something different from his players and team.

“We need to stay healthy this year as that will be a huge factor with us this season,” said Stadium head coach David Jones, as the Tigers’ returning experience could give teams fits this year in the Narrows 4A. The Tigers have some size in the low post with Nate Anderson, Cory Glackin-Coley and Tyler Stumph providing some low-post punch for Stadium.

While there were many great individual plays to last a month last Saturday night, team defense did

not take a back seat to anything in the five games. Points were hard to come by with all the talent on the court as Foss, Wilson, and Lincoln all playing very well both in both man-to-man and zone defenses all night long.

“We really emphasized to our players to play smart at both ends” said Wilson head man Dave Alwert. “We have some smart kids who we told that toughness will be a priority, and with Jaiden Martin back, he could be the catalyst.”

With the success of this year’s event at Wilson and the planned rotation of future tourneys rotating through all five schools in the next five years, the hoop go round could be around for many great years to come.