Friday, November 4, 2011

Eagle hoops Black & Gold Scrimmage fast-paced event

Kimberly Ryan/News-Sun
Hobbs' Aaron Ibarra goes in for a layup at the Black
and Gold Scrimmage Thursday at Tasker Arena.
  Hobbs grad and first-year Eagles coach Mike Smith said the team would return to the up-and-down, full-court pressing style of basketball and the Eagles did just that for a pair of 20-minute halves during the Black and Gold Scrimmage Thursday at Tasker Arena.
  Here are a few things I took away from the scrimmage:
  – Dane Pannell is good, very good: The 6-foot-3 junior who averaged 11.5 points per game as a sophomore (and closer to 16 points per game in the second half of the season) scored 29 points, second to Aaron Ibarra's 30 points.
  But more than that was the way he scored them (and despite getting cut just below his eye minutes into the game). Pannell hit jumpers, took his defender off the dribble, posted up and got a few putbacks. Hobbs fans are going to enjoy watching this young man evolve into one of the better players in the state (if he's not already there).
  – Aaron Ibarra is going to flourish in this style of ball: The tall, lanky Ibarra (6-foot-3 or maybe 6-foot-4) is perfectly suited for this trapping, full-court brand of basketball. His length is a nightmare for opponents and he can finish well in transition. Ibarra even showed off his range by hitting a 3-pointer in the scrimmage. He's probably going to have to rebound more than he's used to as the Eagles lack height, but Ibarra is poised to have a breakout senior season.
  – Austin Montoya is the glue: Montoya is a physical point guard that can shoot, take it to the hoop and will open things up for teammates. I noticed when he came out of the game during the scrimmage, his team had trouble breaking the press and getting into the offense. As long as his aggressiveness doesn't get him in foul trouble, Montoya's play is going to be a strong point for the Eagles.
  – Other positives I noticed: Andrew Barrientes showed his fearless attitude when he drained a session-winning 3-pointer to cap the scrimmage. The senior is so fun to watch because of his tireless work on the court. He'll be Hobbs' main 3-point threat. ... Terrell Wright, a Dallas-area transfer, is a quick point guard who will be a factor once he acclimates to the Hobbs brand of basketball. He showed Thursday he'll be a player for the Eagles. ... Adrian Trevino, a lanky sophomore, showed a nice touch from the perimeter and scored 10 points. He can be a solid guy coming off the bench.
  One of the concerns for Hobbs and playing this style of basketball has to be depth. The top five to seven players are solid, but the Eagles are going to need more players to step up and contribute at the varsity level unless the Eagles are going to wear down in games and as the season goes on.
  It's hard to speculate (even though I just did for this blog) after an intra-squad scrimmage. We'll learn more about this team when the Eagles host a scrimmage Nov. 12 at 10 a.m. against Odessa Permian, El Paso Montwood, Seminole and Deming. We'll learn even more when Hobbs opens up on the road against Midland Lee on Nov. 15.