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Bookstore Basketball: Walk-on Andree wins tourney

Allan Joseph | Monday, April 26, 2010

In a matchup of the top two teams in the tournament, top-seeded Alexander’s Grill overcame the poor conditions and a late second-half charge from He Went to Jared to take the Bookstore Basketball title 21-15 Sunday.

The first drops of rain came just as the captains met at half court before the game, and continued throughout the championship, making passing and shooting difficult.

“The conditions were sub-prime,” said Grill’s Dan Crisman, a junior.

Joining Crisman on Alexander’s Grill were junior Sean Reed and seniors Joe DeMott, Tim Andree and Nick Fessler.

“This has been three years in the making for us,” Crisman said. “We’ve been wanting this for a long time. It was a great game.”

Second-year law students Chuck Flynn and Brendan Rush, first-year law student Fritz Shadley, senior Alex Shadley and sophomore Chris Jung made up He Went to Jared, the No. 2 seed in the tournament.

The three law students and two undergraduates, clad in tie-dye, started the game with the ball and immediately scored on the first possession. Alexander’s Grill relied on a zone defense that applied consistent pressure on the Jared offense while Crisman dictated its own offensive rhythm.

Assisted by some cold shooting from Jared and a momentum-shifting charge taken by Crisman, Alexander’s Grill took an 11-5 lead into halftime.

The teams traded baskets out of the break, and Alexander’s Grill began to cool off just as their opponents heated up. With the score at 13-8, Jared reeled off a 5-2 run to pull within two points, earning the support of the crowd and all of the momentum.

Alexander’s Grill, however, stayed calm on both ends of the floor, tightening up its defense and hitting enough shots to keep the lead. Late in the game, Reed started finding the open man and making plays to open up a comfortable margin late in the contest despite Jared’s late switch from a zone to man-to-man defense. At 20-15, DeMott fought through a foul to sink a layup, giving his team a long-awaited championship.

Crisman said his team’s success in the championship game was due to the effectiveness of his team’s zone defense and ability to make difficult, needed shots.

“We played great team defense all around,” he said. “I was lucky enough to get a number of shots to fall throughout the game.”

After a run through the tournament filled with its share of challenges, Alexander’s Grill was thrilled to earn the long-elusive trophy.

“I’m just really happy right now,” Crisman said. “Hopefully we can get dinner on the house over at Alexander’s.”