Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Everybody Hates Losing

Whitman 84, Calvin 67 (box score)

Fill-in radio man Brad Draayer asked coach Vande Streek what I thought was a very good question after Friday night’s discouraging loss to Whitman.

Was this trip worth it?

The response by KVS contained more than a little bit of coachspeak, but I thought it was a very good response.


No one likes losing. The players hate losing, the coaches hate losing, the fans hate losing. We could make a non-conference schedule where we win most of our games by 10 or 20 points, but we choose to play good teams to help us get better and to prepare us for the conference season.

I think the idea here is that Coach Vande Streek would rather see the team go 0-2 against quality teams like Whitworth and Whitman than 2-0 against teams like Trinity Christian. The latter has the risk of tricking the team into thinking they’re good when really they’re only average. The former may trick the team into thinking they’re terrible when really they’re average.

Obviously, we’d all like to see them go 2-0 against the really good competition. We (and he) would love to see them be great. But they’re not that right now. The philosophy is to play tough teams so that you can truly learn where you stand against the tough competition. I’m willing to take that experience over a falsely inflated W-L record.

Game Bullets

  • As far as I’m concerned, the offensive strategy should revolve around getting the ball to Matt DeBoer, especially in the paint. He’s shooting over 60% on the year, and heaven knows we need to see scoring efficiency right now.
  • The defensive numbers for the game don’t come out all that bad actually. It was a fast paced affair, and even though Whitman scored 84 points, it only ended up being an offensive efficiency rating of about 98.5 for the Missionaries.
  • Tyler Kruis came away from the Pacific Northwest with just five points on two of seven shooting in the two games. I know foul trouble was a big issue in both games, but Tyler needs to be a central part of the offense.
  • Mickey DeVries showed up big on the offensive end. Calvin desperately needs scoring threats, and it was nice to see Mickey cash in on the opportunity.
  • Free throw shooting has suddenly become a big issue for the Knights. They haven’t had a game in which they shot better than 70% as a team since the Cornerstone game on Thanksgiving weekend (seven games ago).

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