Star Spencer's Symon Smith puts on a show
I didn’t know what to expect from Star Spencer Thursday night. Based on the last time I had seen them play, I knew it could be bad, but you always expect to see a good battle between All-City Conference teams, especially in the playoffs.
Still, it was hard to shake the memory of that 104-26 loss to Douglass back in January the last time I saw the Bobcats.
But Symon Smith helped me put that memory behind me quickly. He came out gunning from 3-point range, and I don’t think he even hit the rim on the first four he made. He hit seven in all and finished with 28 points in the 66-63 upset of No. 13 John Marshall.
This was a huge win for Star. With the season they’ve battled through, these kids deserved something good to happen.
Gary Ford doesn’t have the size some of Star’s big men have had in the last couple years, but he’s long, and he works hard on the boards. He also has the offensive skill to go out on the perimeter, which makes him a tough matchup.
It’s easy to forget how good Star was last year, and the fact that all five starters went on to play college ball somewhere. Not only did they fill up the starting lineup, they ate a lot of minutes, so Smith and Ford were the only two guys who really got a lot of varsity action off the bench.
The most impressive thing Thursday night was that after grabbing the early lead — Star went up 21-9 in the first quarter — and seeing John Marshall slowly chip away at it, the Bobcats never caved in. The Bears’ Tyler Harrison started matching Smith swish for swish from long range, and JM eventually pulled within three points late in the third quarter.
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