Saturday, July 2, 2011

Sparkling at Kezar

By Wally Mersereau

The early Fourth of July sparklers lighting up Kezar Pavilion on July 2 were the incoming Stanford freshmen. They all played well in their second summer-league game. Last week I was able to rank the four newcomers who played. This week I just have to say they all played well and all looked good. Joslyn Tinkle out-shone them all by a healthy margin as she did last week. At Kezar it's hard to tell how good Joslyn really is. She has been head and shoulders above the freshmen, literally and figuratively, in the first two games. As a junior she should be a lot better and she is. Joslyn has been doing everything remarkably well and is the go-to player on the South Bay team. But we all know about Joslyn.

Of greater interest are the freshmen.

This was Erica Payne's first game. She did not play last week because of an ankle injury. There was no hint of any ankle problem today. Erica played aggressive offense and defense whenever she was on the floor. She seemed to get to the right place at the right time and often battled for the ball. She made some nice passes and shots.

Amber Orrange is a lefty. I didn't notice that last week, but she relies on her left hand for mid-range and long-range shots. Amber looked very good at point guard. She made two driving baskets and her passing was crisp.

Jasmine Camp played twice as well as she did last week. She is fast and quick. I like her style of play. She stayed close to her assigned player on defense. She also made two driving baskets. I thought Amber and Jasmine were equal at point guard today.

I ranked Taylor Greenfield last among the freshmen last week, but she was more assertive this week. She played aggressively on defense, shot well and did as well as any of her frosh teammates.

Bonnie Samuelson didn't shoot much last week and was somewhat inconspicuous on the floor. This week she had some open shots and made four 3-pointers. She was more in evidence at other times too. Bonnie looks like a dependable 3-point shooter if she gets open.

There was better teamwork for South Bay today. They actually appeared to be running plays. There were a number of passes to cutting players, screens were set and there were several multiple-pass plays.

I was much more impressed with the Stanford freshmen in their second game. Maybe they had more confidence and were a bit more comfortable playing together. I rank all of them equal today. This was an enjoyable and encouraging game to watch. Oh yes, South Bay won 111-81 over San Francisco which was dominated by Cal players. Cal has a great incoming freshman in Brittany Boyd from Berkeley. She is good at everything, has lots of confidence and was the best player for San Francisco, even outplaying Natasha Vital.

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