1st Hoops of the New Year

After a long Christmas break from high school basketball, I headed over to Pomona High School for the game between the home Panthers and the Chatfield Chargers. This was the 4th time I had seen Pomona, and in the first 3 games they were not looking too good. Going into this game, the Panthers were 1-8 and in last place of the Jeffco League. Chatfield was 7-1 going into the game and were in first place, a half game up on Arvada West.

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther Sophomore Daylon Estrada (10) brings the ball up the court in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther Sophomore Daylon Estrada (10) brings the ball up the court in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

I went in as usual to the Pomona gym, guy at the ticket table waved me by, janitors and the staff doing security all either said hi or nodded my way, and I started setting up my strobes just like I had before.  One of the Chatfield parents started asking me about the strobes and how they work and was really excited, asking if I would be shooting any games at their school.

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther Sophomore Javis Larson (1) cuts into the lane with the ball up in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther Sophomore Javis Larson (1) cuts into the lane with the ball up in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

I do not know if it was the layoff of strobing, or what Pomona did in the first half, but I was not having a good night.  My timing and positioning was not great.  And in the first quarter, Pomona was doing something that I was totally blown away by.  They were taking it to Chatfield.  I was shocked to see Pomona coming close to a double digit lead in the first quarter and winning the quarter going into the second leading by 3 with a 18 to 15 score.  In past games, the Panthers had a hard time getting to 10 by half time, but here, they were playing basketball, and playing a good game.

January 3rd, 2013: Chatfield Charger senior Michael Hampson (14) and teammate senior Hank Dickey (40) attempt to block a shot by a Pomona Panther's player the game against the Pomona Panthers in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: Chatfield Charger senior Michael Hampson (14) and teammate senior Hank Dickey (40) attempt to block a shot by a Pomona Panther’s player the game against the Pomona Panthers in Arvada, CO

But, when the second quarter started, it was the Pomona of old.  Turnovers, not rebounding, not following shots, they let the game get away from them.  But all was not lost for Pomona, going into halftime they only trailed by 6, 25 to 31.  There was still plenty of time in the game if Pomona could find that 1st quarter magic.

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther Sophomore Javis Larson (1) floats into the lane for a shot in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther Sophomore Javis Larson (1) floats into the lane for a shot in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

Now, before I go into the second half, let me say, before I first shot hoops in the Pomona gym, I went to Pomona high school and talked to the Activities Secretary, made sure that me using strobes was ok, and she took me to the gym to look it over, find mounting locations, outlets, etc.  During the second half, I had a Assistant Principal come over to me while I was in process of shooting, and ask me if I was blinding the players.  My first thought was to say, yes, at MaxPreps, that is what we do, blind players so the other team wins, but instead of was very polite, and told him no, I was not blinding the players.  My strobes are pointed a mid court, and are approved by CHSAA and required by MaxPreps.  He looked at me, obviously not believing me, but walked away.  But he proceeded to walk back and forth in front of me, both when I was shooting and when action was at the other end, stood next to me grunting every time I took a picture.  Let me say, this hacked me off.  In 10 years of strobing high school sports I have never had a player, coach or official complain.  I know how to set strobes up, how to point them correctly, and I know for a fact that unless a player is looking directly at my strobe (about 20 to 25 feet above the court and un the bleacher or balcony area), they typically do not even realize there were strobes set up.  Even under these circumstances I continued to shoot.  I do not want to cause any issues with any schools, especially in my area of coverage, so, I sent the Activities Secretary am email, letting her know that I had a school staff person question me about my strobes and did his best to let me know he did not like them and that I was more than willing to come in and discuss the benefits and facts about strobing basketball with anyone at the school that may question their use.

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther senior Deshon Mayes (5) fouls Chatfield Charger senior Brenden Mann (30) in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: Pomona Panther senior Deshon Mayes (5) fouls Chatfield Charger senior Brenden Mann (30) in the Panthers game against the visiting Chatfield team from Littleton at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

Back to the game.  When the second half started, Pomona looked pumped.  I was thinking, they really do not have a chance to beat Chatfield, but this could be a really good second half.  It wasn’t.  Pomona continued their play from the second quarter in the third.  Chatfield out scored the Panthers 25 to 9 in the third frame, and it did not stop there.

January 3rd, 2013: Chatfield Charger junior guard Reece Rumsey (10) dribbles the ball in the game against the Pomona Panthers at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: Chatfield Charger junior guard Reece Rumsey (10) dribbles the ball in the game against the Pomona Panthers at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

In the final frame of the game, Pomona just could not chip away at the Charger lead and only added 8 points in the fourth.  Chatfield tacked on another 14 to win the game 70-42.  As for Chatfield, they looked good, but they did not strike me as a great team.  They seem to be missing something.  They have a inside game, but their inside players do not strike me as impact players.  They have an outside game, but nothing that looked to me to be a big threat.  They just really beat Pomona with good, fundamental basketball.

January 3rd, 2013: A Chatfield player elevates for a lay up in his game against the Pomona Panthers in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: A Chatfield player elevates for a lay up in his game against the Pomona Panthers in Arvada, CO

The next hoops game I planned on shooting was the Ralston Valley boys game at Pomona, but until I can clear things up with my strobes at Pomona, I changed that to shooting the same two teams at Ralston Valley, but the girls games instead.

January 3rd, 2013: Chatfield Charger freshman Riley Welch (15) passes the ball along the baseline in the game against the Pomona Panthers at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

January 3rd, 2013: Chatfield Charger freshman Riley Welch (15) passes the ball along the baseline in the game against the Pomona Panthers at Pomona High School in Arvada, CO

To view and purchase photos from this game, please visit the MaxPreps gallery for this game.

 

 

 

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