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Bookstore Basketball XXXV: No. 11 KPMG cruises past Fully Depreciated

Tim Dougherty and Fran Tolan | Monday, April 24, 2006

In a business battle between old and new, No. 11 KPMG steamrolled its toughest competition of the tournament so far to advance to the round of 64 with a 21-7 win against Fully Depreciated.

Matched against five formidably-sized University employees in the accounting office, whose name suggests their games (and accounts) aren’t what they used to be, the accounting firm-sponsored students overcame experience with fresh innovation – and legs.

KPMG established a physical defensive presence early, matching its strength with youthful quickness that enabled the team to force turnovers when Fully Depreciated players drove into the lane.

“These guys were pretty big and physical, so it was good to go out and bang with them,” KPMG senior finance major Greg Hiltz said, while adding that Fully Depreciated was KPMG’s most worthy victim thus far.

Former walk-on running back junior Robert Hyde led KPMG to an 11-4 halftime advantage with four of his five points.

Then Greg “Busch Leaguer” Hiltz Show took control, as he buried three of KPMG’s next four points on mid-range jumpers to stretch the lead to 15-4. His shot tingled the nylon en route to his game-high seven points for KPMG, of whom Hiltz said – if not for sponsorship restrictions – would be aptly named It Tingles.

Hyde and Hiltz, two Keough Hall “Sons of Grace,” were too much for Grace Hall’s current office occupiers, according to Fully Depreciated’s Andy Roeder, who said the team did not have high expectations for the game.

Captain Kyle Johnson agreed, especially since the team had to pick up two late subs.

“The score was closer than the game looked,” Johnson said.

The Smush Parker Project 21, Team Vinny 4

Bookstore Basketball learned a new term Sunday, as Team Vinny found out what it feels like to get “smushed” in the final day of round of 128 play.

Though Webster and Oxford may not include “smushed” in their literal lexicons, the definition would have something to do with falling behind 8-0, being dominated in the paint, and succumbing to relentless transition basketball by Dillon freshman.

Michael Wakim was all over the court for Smush Parker, hounding ball handlers by picking their pockets or forcing errant throws. Smush Parker then beat Vinny down the court to convert those turnovers into easy baskets around the net. Only one of Smush Parker’s first-half points came outside of 10 feet from the rim, as the squad commanded an 11-4 lead.

Team Vinny struggled to find an inside presence all day, settling for unsuccessful long jumpers into unpredictably gusty winds.

Wakim was on the receiving end of several fastbreaks that he started, leading Smush Parker with six points and several steals in a game which the team was fully prepared.

“We came and scouted them the game before and knew we had nothing to worry about,” Wakim said confidently.

After the win, Smush Parker ran through a tunnel of hands formed by their numerous fans.

“We had great fan support out there,” Wakim said. “We had the sixth man on the sidelines.”

On the court, it was Mark Langhans who complimented Wakim’s performance with five hard-earned baskets around the rim, establishing an inside game that featured rebounding dominance thanks to Smush Parker’s superior ability to box out.

Langhans, on the other hand, explained their overall success more simply.

“They got smushed,” he said.

Team Mountain Lightning 21, Pageantry 12

With a smashmouth style of play resembling that of a football team, Team Mountain Lightning defeated Pageantry Sunday. Mountain Lightning’s Brent Gills was able to put up a game-high 13 points despite the physical play by both teams.

“Nobody could hit a shot in the beginning, but I eventually found my stroke,” Gills said.

Both teams maintained high intensity levels throughout the contest, but Mountain Lightning was able to pull away early in the second half.

“Both teams got pissed off but, after about two hours of play, we were happy to come out with the win,” Mountain Lightning captain T.J. Ceravolo said.

Ceravolo also said the Pageantry players were poor sports when they fell behind.

“They got really whiny,” he said.

Mountain Lightning was thrilled to advance to the next round after the rough victory.

“We’re definitely ready to move on,” Ceravolo said.

Average Joe’s 21, Justice League of Notre Dame 10

Average Joe’s cruised to a victory over a less-than-super Justice League of Notre Dame team Sunday. The Average Joe’s are already preparing for its round of 64 matchup.

“We gon’ get to that next round,” Average Joe’s swingman Benedict “Hendry” Pietrzak said. “I wanna know where the gold at.”

Average Joe’s dominated the Justice League inside to build an 11-6 halftime lead.

It also employed a suffocating 2-3 zone that Justice League was unable to solve throughout the contest.

Average Joe’s point guard Jeff Schweitzer, generously listed at 5-foot-4, shouldered much of the offensive burden to take the pressure off of his teammates.

“Jeff played like he was at least 5-foot-8 today,” Pietrzak said. “He was a monster for us.”