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SoCalHoops Tournament News
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Oregon Holiday Invitational: Redondo Loses;
Jesuit Beats No. 1 Rice--(Dec. 21, 1999)

Ok, so the big news for SoCal fans coming out of Oregon was either that Redondo Union lost to Beaverton 69-52, or that Portland Jesuit, which no longer has Michael Dunleavy, Jr., (6'-7" SG/SF) who is now at Duke making a huge impact, beat the nation's consensus No. 1 team, Rice of New York.

We'll get to the Redondo game in a moment, but first we have to dwell a little bit on the upset of Rice.  This is big.  No, this is enormous.   It's huge.

Or as Dave Charbonneau of the Daily Oregonian put it:

"Forget about the No. 1 team in the nation. 

"Forget about high-flying Jefferson [Portland]. 

"Heck, forget about Michael Dunleavy, for that matter.  

Monday was Brian Michaelson's night at the Les Schwab Oregon Holiday Invitational as he scored 22 of his 30 points in the second half to lead Jesuit to a 75-62 win over Rice in front of 2,650 at Lewis & Clark College."

Rice came into the tournament ranked No. 1 in the nation, and Jesuit, the defending Oregon state champs longer have Dunleavy, the state's player of the year last season, and they had only two starters returning.   It was supposed to be a down year.  Just look at these two picutres and see which team you'd pick to win if you had to just by looking:

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Michael Wright (5'-9" Sr. G)
Chris Hutcherson (5'-10" Sr. G)
Michael McGrain (6'-3" Jr. G)
Rian Vaught (6'-1" Sr. SG/SF)
Alex Williams (6'-5" Sr. SG/SF)
Kyle Osterson (6'-2" Sr. SG/SF)
Brian Michaelson (6'-4" Sr. SF/SG)
Vic Remmers (6'-5" Jr.SG/SF)
David Jubite (6'-5" Sr. C)
Scott Dougherty (6'-5" So. C)
Colin Griffin (6'-0" Sr. SG)
Dwayne Thomas (6'-1" Sr. G)
Keydren Clark (5'-6" So. G)
Jason Wingate (6'-0" So. G)
Kenneth Eusey (6'-0" So. G)
Darryl Hall (6'-0" Jr. G)
Andre Barrett (5'-9" Sr. G)
Spencer Longmore (6'-9" Jr. SF/SG)
Mark Wilson (6'-9" Jr. F)
Louis Rodriguez (6'-4" So. F)
Emil Pinnock (5'-8" Jr. G)
Kyle Cuffe (6'-9" Sr. F)
Andre Sweet (6'-6" Sr. F/G)
Frank Gathright (6'-9" Sr. F)
Shakeem Mitchell (6'-8" Sr. PF)
Shagari Alleyne (7'-2" Fr. C)

So which team,  if you had to guess, was mostly likely to have won this game?  Oh sure, you would have picked Jesuit.   Right.  Not in a million years would anyone have picked them to win. They went into this game unranked anywhere, even in Portland. Not rated by anyone, and no one thought they were going to do anything this year. Which is why a win like this over a team like Rice is so great.   "This is probably the biggest win in this school's history," Jesuit point guard Mike McGrain, who finished with 11 assists, said after the game. "No. 1 team in the nation. Us without Dunleavy. I'm telling you, it's huge." 

Jesuit was, as noted,  led by Brian Michaelson who scored 22 of his 30 points in the second half. We've seen Michaelson play before, and knew he was good, but this kind of a win is something else again. A good night?  Ok. Everyone has a good night.  But to have a great night against a great team, well that's what makes high school ball so fun, so unpredictable.  Rice also the defending New York state champs in their division, and they've got three legitimate high-major D-I players on their roster, and those are just the guys who are going to play D-I next year. They've probably got at least 10 D-I prospects, maybe more, on their 15 man roster. When you beat them, you've really beaten someone. 

Michaelson was interviewed by the Daily Oregonian after the game and told reporters, "I just said, 'Let's have fun tonight,' We're 12 kids from Beaverton playing 12 kids from New York. Big deal."   Er, um, ok.   Right.  But these were 12 really, really big kids from New York.

Jesuit was down at the half, 39-30, but tied the game at the end of the third quarter.  But to start the fourth, Michaelson scored the first seven points to make it  57-50 with 6:20 left. Rice never got within five points after that as Michaelson ended up with 15 points in the quarter. He also had 12 rebounds for the game. Michael McGrain finished with 11 assists and nine points.  Rice was led by Andre Barrett (who has signed with Seton Hall) had 23 points, and Andre Sweet (St. John's) added 14.

A lot of people will say that something else besides good basketball must have been responsible for a win like this.  Maybe it was hometown refereeing?  We don't think so. While Barrett did foul out, it was at the end of the game, and with 23 points already (the box score has him playing 32 minutes, which was, literally, the entire game).  Other than Barrett fouling out, only one other Rice player had 3 fouls, and the rest had only 1 or 2.  In fact Jesuit went to the line fewer times than Rice did (15 for Rice, 14 for Jesuit).  Was it turnovers?    Well, Rice had 15, but Jesuit turned the ball over 21 times.  Was it rebounding? Well, that was evidently one of the keys:  Rice had 30 boards in the game (11 offensive and 19 defensive), and Jesuit had 41 (9 offensive and an amazing 32 defensive boards). Michaelson alone had 12 boards, 11 of them defensive.  Yup, it was a good night for Michaelson.

As for the Redondo, while it's always a shame to see a good team form SoCal lose, this one was not nearly as dramatic as the Jesuit v. Rice game, and as we said, it resulted in a loss by the Sea Hawks to the Beavers of Beaverton. The Beavers were led by Bryce Loftin with 19 points, and Dustin Hummel with 12. Redondo Union was led by Andrew Zahn's 20 points and 10 rebounds.   Zahn was called for a technical in the game.  Beyond that, we're not really sure exactly what happened, but if you want to know, the game stats are here.

And while looking around this morning for details of what happened, we found another eyewitness account of the Redondo game and the Jesuit game, which was posted on the message forum at PacWestHoops by OR-Bruin, who is a huge UCLA fan and who also frequents the UCLA message forums at several sites, and who was a regular when WestCoastHoops was up and running.  Here's what he posted:

Got to see some more great hoops last night, and the Oregon boys looked sensational. The huge surprise was Jesuit, where Michael Dunleavy played, beating the #1 team in the country, Rice from NY. The crowd was absolutely nuts as Jesuit (rated #2 in OR) came back from a half time deficit to win going away, 75-62. This kid named Brian Michaelson had 22 in the second half, 30 overall, and was just unstoppable. I had never heard of him, but he sure looked D1 to me. 6'4", very emotional, quick release that was going in from everywhere, and looked good, and sometimes downright tricky, driving to the hoop. He also seemed to be around the ball constantly, and had 12 rbs. The pg, Micheal McGrain, also looked good, with 11 assists (a lot of help from Michaelson). Andre Barrett was pretty awesome too, picking up the scoring slack this time with 23, but most in the first half.

Aaron Miles was pretty quiet in a Jefferson win. Actually, I barely noticed him. Brandon Brooks comes back from a suspension tonight, it will be interesting to see how they play with 3 D1 Pgs on their roster. Mike Lee looked better than Miles tonight, and they had a center named John Tinnon who was a force in the middle, but probably only 6'8-9" I'll have to check him out more closely next time since he ended up with 15 boards.

Andrew Zahn was great again, even though I only got to see the second half and Redondo was getting drubbed by Beaverton (no kidding, it's a town.) Zahn was getting doubled constantly and still ended up with 20/10. He hit a couple of nice turn around fadeaways from 12 feet that were pretty slick. Pushed guys around a lot. Sign him up.

Nick Anderson is the best player here, doing pretty much whatever he wants inside and out. He's going to be an impact guy next year.

Conclusions:

UCLA should grab Zahn.

UCLA should scout Miles, especially next year when it's more his team.

OR hoops looks real good. California Schmalifornia.

If you want to check out the stats, or the rest of the scores in the tournament they can all be found at the Official Oregon Holiday Invitational website. Look for the USA Today rankings to change with the next poll and to include Jesuit at least in the Top 25.  Currently they are unranked nationally, and regionally.   Just goes to show you that any team can be any other on any given night.

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