score: Storm 68 Sun 63 (W) (5-2)
Watch | I don't think the night requires any
proof that the flag was still there
Psyche | No more week-long layoffs please
Highlight | Lots of Vitamin K
| Some kind of dance troupe thing
| Betty was the victim of a vicious offensive
charge committed by Nykesha Sales (the Storm don't flop)
Keyword of the Game | Fugly
Photos | Game
Photos (Scott Larson)
Photos (Christine Nelson)
about the only good thing to come out of this unsatisfying
game (yes, it was a win, but it didn't feel like one) was
that Kamila looked like her old rock steady self again. She
scored a double double with 18 points and 10 rebounds and
was pretty much able to do anything she wanted whenever she
wanted (except hit her free throws).
Sun were really jamming Lauren early in the game and Kamila
was able to capitalize, although KV was hitting from everywhere
and not only in the post. She looked very comfortable with
her shot and was much more aggressive on defense than she's
been in the earlier games this season. I've speculated a couple
of times that I thought she might have some back pain or something
because it looked like she had been wearing a wrap around
her lower back. The biggest benefit from the week off the
Storm had was that Kamila got over whatever it was that had
been bothering her.
curious thing though, and I tried to get a picture of it to
see if anyone could identify what it is - Kamila had what
looked like a plastic support structure inside her shoes,
and they didn't look like they were part of the shoes. They
looked like some sort of insert. I don't know that I've heard
that Kamila has ever had any trouble with her feet or ankles,
so I can't say that they are there to alleviate an injury
or something. All I can say is that they are blue, which is
what caught my attention.
the good news is that Kamila had a great game and it was fortuitous
that it came tonight because the Storm were rusty —
and that's being a little generous.
both teams were frustrated — at the refs who called
some really weird stuff tonight, and at their own teammates.
On the Sun, Katie Douglas was jawing at Debbie Black. Sales
was jawing at pretty much everyone. The Storm were sniping
at each other a bit too. Betty fought off Lauren for a rebound
and got a reminder that she's not the only one out there.
There was also a lot more "directing traffic" going
on during offensive sets because players weren't where they
needed to be and were instead doing a lot of standing around.
and Lauren led the frustration parade for the Storm. It has
been reported in the local press that Betty has an injury
that kept her from practicing much this past week. Two or
three times tonight, she would come off the floor and head
into the tunnel with the trainer to get a wrap she had on
her right thigh retaped because it seemed to keep coming apart.
On one occasion when she walked past the bench, I could see
it hanging down past the hem of her shorts. In addition to
having that distraction, Betty was getting burned by the bigger
Sun guards and small forwards and Coach D kept pulling her
out. Betty was very unhappy most of the game.
was also getting very frustrated both by the very physical
Sun defenders and the loopy refs. Taj McWilliams-Franklin,
Wendy Palmer and Asjha Jones all took turns making LJ's life
more difficult — which you would expect since she is
the reigning MVP. LJ's going to be the big target for any
defense and normally she is able to adapt to it without overtly
showing any signs of frustration. Tonight, she was able to
still score 22 in spite of all the elbows and body blows she
received from the Sun, but I think she let them get to her
because she was cussing up a storm out there. It also showed
in that she was forcing her offense more so than she normally
does. I think one of the great things about LJ's game is that
she can find ways to score seemingly without worked too hard.
I'm not saying she isn't working hard because she is usually
double teamed. What I'm saying is that she is very efficient
at finding smart opportunities to score and does it within
the flow of the game very well. Tonight she wasn't in the
flow and was trying to force baseline drives to the basket
against solid defenses. The unfortunate result is that she
would get hacked with no call or miss the basket which would
feed the frustration. Kind of a vicious circle.
in all, a fairly unsatisfying win and one that I know did
not make for a happy coach. Coach D had that look on her face
as she left the court - the look that means someone is going
to be running wind sprints tomorrow in practice. I'm hoping
that it was just the long time off between games and that
going on the road might be a good thing - the Storm can get
back into a playing groove. Being on the road can also help
the team get their focus back because the home distractions
will fall away. I'm hoping that I'm right because our next
game will be for first place in the league, and the Liberty
are hot hot hot.
mom was at the game and sitting a couple rows behind us.
on the forum, people were discussing the types of shoes the
players are wearing, so I tried to get a couple shots of shoes.
One interesting shoe note - Janell Burse has a Bible verse
written in the arch of her left shoe. Most of the players
are wearing the same Reebok style, but Janell, Sue, Lauren
and Sheri have different brands/styles.
had three female refs tonight. It seems like a long time since
that has happened, not that they were any better than a mixed
crew. Being closer to the game, I've been noticing more about
how the refs work the games. One thing that caught my eye
is that they signal each other a lot, especially when the
teams are in transition. One time, I clearly saw one of the
sideline refs signal "33" to the baseline ref. Sure
enough, Janell got a call against her during the next play.
It seems that if one ref is telling another to "watch
out" for a certain player before the play has even begun,
isn't that unfairly putting the focus on one player when the
ref should be equally watching everyone as much as possible?
I'm sure this is a common thing for them and I'm just noticing
it for the first time, but it doesn't seem like they should
be doing that.
did his normal timeout choo-choo train thing and it finally
went awry since at least a couple kids were still running
around the court after play had resumed. We're going to get
a technical one of these days, not to mention the times that
a kid has walked right up and into the Storm huddle. If this
choo-choo thing is a keeper, someone has to at least shield
the teams from getting bothered by opportunistic kids.
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