Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Turnover woes, slow rotation on press burn Eagles in loss

  Yes, Tuesday night's boys basketball matchup between Roswell High and Hobbs in Roswell had the feel of Hobbs games of past with 184 combined points scored during the Class 4A  top-ranked and undefeated Coyotes' 94-90 victory over the 5A No. 9 Eagles in a four-quarters-of-fury affair.
  However, while the style of play was there, Hobbs' execution wasn't. The Eagles committed 30 turnovers (leading to several points for Roswell) and rotated poorly on the press and didn't protect the basket (leading to several Roswell layups).
  Hobbs has to start taking care of the ball. Lets just put it this way, if Hobbs commits even 10 less turnovers and scores on half of those possessions (Hobbs shot over 50 percent in the game), the Eagles win this game.
  It starts at the guard position as the Eagles are having way too many turnovers come from a position that should cherish each possession. I understand Hobbs wants to play uptempo, but it also has to play under control or games like Tuesday will happen.
  Another issue is the large number of layups due to teams breaking the Eagles' press. With this full-court pressing style, layups for opponents are going to happen – but it shouldn't be happening this much. Hobbs' opponents are feasting off of the Eagles' inability to stay disciplined on its rotations in the press. It takes just one player not to be where he's supposed to be and it turns into a glorified layup line for the Eagles' opponents.
  With that being said, the Eagles were just a couple of breaks away (including Roswell hitting a desperation, banked-in, 30-plus-foot 3-pointer at the end of the first quarter, the second time this season it has happened to Hobbs in what turned out to be a close loss) from beating the top ranked team in Class 4A that hasn't lost a game this season.
  The Eagles at 11-7 on the season are getting close. If they can clean some of these issues and not regress in other areas, Hobbs may start peaking just at the right time.