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Fresno Wash. Union Defeats Fresno Edison--(Dec. 1, 1998)

Tonight Fresno Washington Union defeated cross-town rival Fresno Edison 75 -62, and our friend Marty Hartwig was there getting most of the action.  And while the report may seem brief, it does convey the essence of what happened and how these two teams, the top favorites in the Central Section, played.   Here's Marty's report:

It looked like it might be a long night for Edison as Washington's DeShawn Stevenson controlled the tip, and then immediately scored on an alley oop slam. However, play was very even in the 1st quarter of a physical game, with Washington leading 14-13.

In the 2nd quarter, the physical play continued, with Edison fouling Stevenson nearly every time he touched the ball. Edison used their height advantage inside to maintain a close game. At the half,
Washington was up 35-27.

In the second half, Edison came out in a full court press that bothered Union, and Edison tied the game up at 44 with 1:30 left in the 3rd period. Stevenson was fouled hard going to the basket with 0:58 left, and went down out of bounds. An Edison player threw the ball, hitting Stevenson. Edison was eventually assessed a technical foul (which probably averted a riot and saved the officials) despite the protests of coach Pat Riddlesprigger (I personally don't think the ball was intentionally thrown at Stevenson, but I suppose you could argue it shouldn't have been thrown at all). Stevenson made 3 of 4 free throws to put Washington up 47-44. Edison scored on a 3 point shot to tie the game at 47 with 0:22 left. Archie DePree Copeland drove the lane and scored at the buzzer to put Washington up 49-47.

In the final period, Edison seemed to tire and also had several people in foul trouble. Stevenson took control, playing the point and driving to the basket or dishing off (yes SoCalHoops is right, he does play very unselfishly in this environment). With 2:03 left in the game, Washington led 67-55. The teams traded baskets (and fouls) to end the game at 75-62.

In addition to DeShawn Stevenson's play, DeShawn Anderson had a very solid game, as did Carvell Wafer and Shamell Stallworth. Adam Fain also played a role, subbing for Wafer when Wafer had foul problems. Fouls plagued both teams as emotions ran high.

Although this was a great game to watch, complete with a loud standing room only crowd, it wasn't quite the West Fresno shoot-out it could have been, because Edison was missing two key players, Willie Johnson and Joe Gilliam, who are still playing with Edison's football team (playing for the Central Section championship on Friday). Union was without the services of Coupe Taylor, who was on the bench in street clothes.

Marty tells us that he'll have more during the week on the Buchannan Tournament, which will feature Fresno Washington Union,   LeMoore (Central),  Visalia Golden West, Porterville Monache, Clovis West, LA Canoga Park,  Madera, LA Sylmar,  Fresno Edison, Bakersfield Highland, Bakersfield Centennial, Buchannan, LA Chatsworth, Clovis High,  Fresno Hoover, and Inglewood.  Given the number of truly SoCal teams (as opposed the the Central Section teams) in this one, we'll be very eager to get Marty's continuing reports.  The tournament starts tomorrow, and we're hoping that Marty or someone else will send us a listing of the brackets and keep us all up to speed on what's happening.

The Swish Award
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