Sunday, March 11, 2012


It was region basketball where the Robbinsdale Cooper Hawks took on the Park Center Pirates. Park Center came into the game with a record of 18-8. Coopers record was 11-5. This was the first time that either of these teams have faced each other.

Both teams appeared loose as they warmed up, relaxed ready to do battle.

The Hawks won the tip and Park Center started out on defense using a zone match-up. Cooper matched the Pirates with a zone defense of their own. Cooper looked to push the ball down the court. Cooper's Rashad Vaughn brought the ball down the court. Throughout the game the Park Center Pirates sent various defenders to try and slow the Cooper guard down.

Both teams traded baskets early. But neither team was exceptionally hot. It took each team awhile for both teams to feel each other out and find the best matchups.

Cooper took their time on the offensive end. Park Center wanted to get the ball into the hands of guard Quinton Lee Hooker to force the pace. Hookers speed and ball handling ability allowed him to beat his man off the dribble in the open court. Cooper had a hard time defending Hooker for a period of time. Hookers overall game was very good, on both ends of the court.

However, The Cooper Hawks had a road runner of their own by the name of Rashad Deandre Vaughn. Vaughn was quick off the dribbled and looked to get easy lay-ups down the middle of the court as he tried to blow by his defender.

After running up and down the court for the first 9 minutes and 6 seconds Park Center called a timeout with 10:54 left in the first half. The score was Cooper 15 and Park Center 7. As can be seen from the score both teams came out sluggish.

Both of these teams played with a lot of emotion and intensity the whole game. Neither teams head coaches sat during the first half. They were both up coaching their kids and shouting instructions. The players responded well.

Multiple Cooper players were able to pick off some passes on the defensive end and turn them into points on the offensive end. Park Center did get some deflections but they were not able to come up with the ball.

Leroy Taylor for Cooper did a good job of running the offense. He would switch up between the point and off guard spot.

Park Canter stayed in a zone defense for most of the first half. They were able to show some
man-to-man in transition but mostly stayed in the zone.

Vaughn was able to get the ball inside the paint and he went up strong with the ball. He was not afraid to get fouled going strong to the basket and came up with some nice plays in the first half.

After playing another 5 minutes and 54 seconds in the first half Cooper scored another 14 points while Park Center only managed to score 11 points. Cooper called a timeout with 5:00 left in the first half. The score was Cooper 29 and Park Center 18.

Both teams did a good job of going after loose balls and rebounds. There were many jump balls and tie ups in the first half. Players were physical as they dove on the court after loose balls.

The Park Center defense flustered them a little bit down the stretch. Park Center's Treton Daniels shot the ball well in the first half. He was looking for his shot early and often.

A large amount of students from each school showed up to show support for their schools. They cheered and chanted for their teams and there was some good chants that went back and forth between each schools. This is what really makes March Madness exciting for MN High School Basketball. No doubt each game helps build found memories for the students as well as the players.

The score at halftime was Cooper 39 and Park Center 30.

After the first 4 minutes and 41 seconds into the second half, Cooper added 9 more points to their score while Park Center manage only 6. Head Coach Dave Johnson didn't like what he saw on the floor so he called a timeout with 15:19 left in relegation. The score was Cooper 48 and Park Center 36.

Park Center picked up their defensive pressure full court after the timeout in an effort to close the gap and not let the game get totally out of reach. However, Cooper was able to handle the pressure with relative ease.

Both of these teams let it all out on the floor. Cooper was a little bit quicker than Park Center to the loose balls and on defense and offense. Despite being out quicked, Park Center didn't give up at all. They fought hard throughout the whole game.

Both teams looked to score fast break points. They were both able to that as they traded baskets with just over 13 minutes left in regulation.

Park Center's Joshua Matthews was all over the floor. He was able to drive hard to the basket and make lay-ups. If the lane was clogged by defenders he would step up and shoot a mid-range jump shot. Park Center was closing the gap as a result of their hustle.

Cooper called a timeout with 10:27 left in regulation. The score Cooper 55 and Park Center 51.

Hooker was not himself in the game. I got late word that he had been sick the week leading up to the game and was only in school the required hours to be eligible to play in the game. I thought that he played well despite being sick.

Park Center called a timeout with 5:51 left in regulation. The score was Cooper 62 and Park Center 55.

Park Center did all they could to try to catch up to Cooper. They kept their composer throughout the game. The guards from each team didn't seem to get flustered by the environment.

Park Center fought back after the timeout. They were able to get within two points with 4:45 left in regulation. Hooker caught a cramp on a lay-up but he still stayed in the game.

Park Center did a good job of getting the ball out of the net on the defensive end in an effort to get some quick points.

The game came down to the wire. Leroy Taylor came up with some key baskets for Cooper late in the game. He was able to get to the baskets and create his own shot. Park Center fouled Taylor down the stretch but he was able to hit his free throws.

In a game that went back and forth throughout Cooper came away with the 79-69 victory Park Center.

The leading scorers for Park Center were Quinton Lee Hooker with 18 points, Treyton Daniles with 21 points, and Joshua Mattthews with 16 points.

The leading scorers for Cooper were Rashad Vaughn with 24 points, and Curtis Shelby with 14 points.

I was joined by the Twin Cities Hoop Czar check out his thoughts on the Cooper vs. Park Center boys' region game. I was also joined by Aaron Edward of  MYSM. Check out his thoughts of the game.

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