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Friday, March 23, 2012

Owen Sound Sun-Times: All-Star Games Taken Seriously

Article By:  Bill Walker

Peter Campbell got an eyeful of the Bluewater Athletic Association's basketball all-stars.

The long-time coach at Wilfrid Laurier University came north to scout West Hill's Nick Lau at the second-annual BAA senior boys all-star game on Thursday.

"I came up to watch one guy and I saw a bunch more worth looking at," Campbell told the players during the half-time break of the senior game. "This is a great time for you. You get to play basketball. But if you want to play in university, you're going to have to work hard in the summer to get ready. It's like anything in life. You have to work harder than anybody else and then things will open up for you."

What Campbell saw on Thursday was a little more than your average all-star game.

While the defence was a little loose, players were still hitting the floor for loose balls and making their opponents pay to drive the lane.

"It's fairly competitive," said Kevin Matheson, president of the Grey-Bruce Association of Basketball Officials, which organized the junior and senior all-star games on Thursday at OSCVI. "Certainly the junior game showed that."

The junior contest saw the North squad erase an 18-point half-time deficit only to miss a defensive assignment in the final minute.

That allowed Kincardine District's Logan Shewfelt an uncontested layup in the South's 72-70 win.

Sacred Heart's Mitch Eckert and Shewfelt led the South with 12 points each.

Georgian Bay's Kahler Thacker led all scorers with 19 points, while OSCVI's Matt Wardrop added 11 for the North.

"In the last 10 minutes we started hitting our shots and pressuring the ball and everyone was playing great," said Thacker, a 15- year-old Grade 10 student.

"We had a bit of a defensive breakdown (on the winning basket). We had a bit of a mishap and left someone open. The guys had a great effort and hustled back and made it close. Overall it was a great experience. I loved it."

St. Mary's Jacob Hill won the junior three-point shooting competition while the OSCVI team of Braden Boley and Matt Wardrop won the two-ball event.

Saugeen District's Jacob Darlington hit 13 three-pointers in the senior competition while OSCVI's Kevin Bunn and Dustin Boley won the two-ball competition.

Grey Highlands' Sheldon Morris won the dunk competition by leaping over a teammate, who was seated in a chair in front of the basket, and taking a pass from another player for the dunk.

Lau had 22 points as the North seniors cruised to a 79-47 win. Sacred Heart's Riley Knox led the South with 16 points.

The all-star game is staged by the officials association. It raised more than $300 to go to the SUDEP Foundation (Sudden Unexplained Death in Epilepsy) in memory of Grey Highlands girls player Jordan Fawcett, who died suddenly from the condition in November 2010.

The association has established a scholarship in her name.

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