Friday, February 4, 2011

The Tom Snikkers Show

Calvin 72, Kalamazoo 69 (box)

The first half was deja vu all over again.Calvin shot only 36% from the floor, allowed Kalamazoo to shoot 48%, lost the rebounding battle 19-17, and trailed on the scoreboard 39-31.

Tom Snikkers seemed like the only one who wanted to score. Tommy notched 13 of Calvin's 31 first half points on 5 of 10 shooting. I guess we should also applaud Jordan Brink's first half. He added seven points on 2-3 shooting (plus a few free throws). Brink and Snikkers combined for 20 points on (7-13 from the floor), so the rest of the team only managed 11 points (4-17, only 23.5%). YIKES!

The Kalamazoo defense is for real. They're very active and aggressive, and they don't allow very many good looks at the basket, but that first-half shooting percentage was unacceptable. Thankfully, the second half was a different story.

Snikkers was again the leading scorer for the half with 14 (5-9), but he got much more support from his teammates. The rest of the Knights chipped in 27 points and shot a much more respectable 48% from the floor.

Game Chart


Tom's 27 points came in a very efficient manner. Sometimes players reach high point totals simply because they take a lot of shots (like Prepolec did tonight, more later), but Snikkers effectively shot over 55% for the game, scoring a nice and efficient 1.18 points every time he looked to score (PPWS).

The minutes were spread more evenly tonight than I recall in recent games. Eight guys played at least 15 minutes, and three more played more then seven. I'm not sure that I particularly love this distribution of minutes, but I do love seeing Brink and Kruis play 20 minutes.

Speaking of Kruis, he's become a fantastic interior defender. He moved into a tie for the league lead in blocked shots with six tonight, but he's had significantly fewer minutes than co-leader Joe Prepolec. Kruis did a number on Prepolec defensively in this game. Prepolec's final scoring line looks good with 21 points, but he only shot 39% and wasn't terribly efficient (0.96 points per weighted shot). Four of Prepolec's 18 shots were blocked by Kruis.

Up Next
A very big road game with Olivet. I haven't gotten into the stats yet, but I like how the Knights match up with the Comets. McClary is a load to handle, but they don't really have a threatening three point attack, so double or triple down on the big man and walk away with the win (probably won't be that easy).

Calvin wasn't ranked in the first set of NCAA regional rankings, but they may still have a shot at an at-large tournament should they fail to win the automatic qualifier that comes with the MIAA Tournament championship. Their margin for error will be small though, and they certainly can't afford more than one more regular season loss (if they can even afford that).

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