By Rob Potter
LOCH SHELDRAKE January 1, 2002 Its safe to say that Tri-Valleys Kyle Humphrey likes shooting at the baskets located at both ends of the court inside Sullivan County Community Colleges Paul Gerry Fieldhouse.
In last Thursdays game versus Liberty at SCCC, Humphrey burned the fieldhouse nets for 30 points. The junior guard also set a new school record for three-point shots in a game, connecting on eight shots from beyond the three-point arc.
Behind Humphreys shooting, T-V (3-3) posted a 62-48 victory over Liberty in Round 1 of the SCCC High School Holiday Tournament.
Unlike past years, the 2001 tournament featured only three teams in the boys division. Therefore, those squads The Family School, Liberty and T-V faced off in a round-robin manner.
(Following the Liberty/T-V contest, Liberty played The Family School on Friday night and T-V met Family in a Saturday evening game.)
Humphrey was quick to display his three-point accuracy versus the Indians. In the first quarter, he drained five three-pointers to help the Bears grab an 18-9 lead at the end of those opening eight minutes.
Then in the third quarter, Humphrey added a trio of triples. That allowed T-V to outscore Liberty, 19-10 in the period and take a 45-30 advantage into the final stanza.
I felt pretty good tonight, Humphrey said. I dont know why, but I play pretty well here.
Earlier this season, Humphrey scored 32 points in a game versus Chapel Field that was held at the Paul Gerry Fieldhouse.
He was quick to point out the play of his teammates, however.
They did a great job of opening things up for me, Humphrey explained. They were able to get penetration into the lane, so the Liberty defense couldnt key on me.
Among those on hand watching Humphreys outstanding shooting performance was his older brother, Kiri. In fact, Kiri, a 1992 T-V graduate, held the Bears single game three-point record with seven until Thursday night, that is.
That was nice for him that his older brother was here to see him break the record, said T-V Coach Jason Semo.
While noting that Humphrey had an outstanding game, Semo was pleased with how all of the Bears performed.
The team played very well tonight, he said. Danny Weisberg did a nice job for us at point guard. And Zac Bright played well coming off the bench and playing the point.
Semo noted that his relatively young team, which has six juniors and four sophomores, has benefited from the leadership of its seniors. Center Andy Hadden and guard Jeremiah Salomon are the only twelfth-graders on the Bear varsity squad.
They are our practice leaders, Semo said. They work hard and lead by example. And they show a lot of heart out on the court.
While Humphrey finished the night with a game-high 30 points, Martin Henry-Lester scored 10 points for the Bears. Weisberg and Eli Felder added eight and seven points respectively for T-V.
In the fourth quarter, Liberty did its best to pull out the victory and spoil Humphreys individual record setting performance.
The Indians outscored T-V, 18-17, in the final period and cut the lead down to just eight points with 1:36 remaining. Following a drive to the hoop and layup by Weisberg that boosted the T-V lead back to 10, Libertys Nick Christian hit a long jumper to make it a 56-48 game with 56 seconds left.
But in that final minute, Liberty missed four shots and was forced to foul the Bear players to conserve time. Humphrey, Weisberg and Henry-Lester each converted a pair of free throws in those final seconds to preserve the victory.
We knew he [Humphrey] was a great shooter and thought he might get about 20 points, Liberty Coach Ed Riente said. But he ended up with 30 and some other players stepped up for them.
Riente noted that his team outscored T-V in the second and fourth quarters, but that it wasnt enough.
Our shooting percentage is not where it needs to be, he said. And thats at the foul line and from the field.
Indeed, the Indians converted only 50 percent of their foul shots (seven of 14) on the evening. T-V, meanwhile made 18 of 22 shots (82 percent) from the charity stripe.
Note: Look for more coverage of the holiday tournament including the consolation and championship games of the girls division in Fridays issue of the Democrat.