Knight Time is the Right Time: A Bellarmine Look <<, and Look >>

You sayin’ to yourself, okay, I need to see this Bellarmine Knight squad that everybody’s talkin’ about? I’ll head over to Norris Place tonight to check out the regular season finale against rival Kentucky Wesleyan.

Fugeddaboutit!

Unless you’ve already got tickets. The game is sold out.

If Scotty Davenport’s second-ranked Knights prevail, they’ll become the first team in the history of the ever tough GLVC to trample through the league schedule without a loss. Bellarmine bested the Panthers in early December in Owensboro, 78-75.

Despite the Knights’ lock on the league title, every game remains important for NCAA seeding purposes. Which means home games in the Dance.

* * * * *

Which is all I’m going to say today about the future.

But let’s do consider the #2 Knights’ steady W over sixth-ranked Southern Indiana on Thursday. The final tally was 84-79.

It wasn’t easy. The lead changed hands on four straight possesions with about 5:00 to play, until the Knights could exert some tenuous control.

* * * * *

I have espoused my buddy David’s axiom before.

“You always look good when you make your shots.”

The Screaming Eagles hit 8 of their first 9 shots. They held the lead the entire first half, ahead 41-37 at the break.

Bellarmine hit 5 of its first 6 field goals in the second half to take the lead. When the Knights finally secured the advantage for good, 66-65 with 4:44 to play, they’d hit 72% after the break. The game remained in doubt until Justin Benedetti hit a trey with 34.8 to play for a six point lead, followed by a Chris Dowe breakaway slam to blow the roof off the joint.Truthfully, the gym went din.

Sadly David hasn’t been in town to enjoy the fruition of his proclamation. He’s in Bali on vacation. Unless the game was telecast on ESPN South Seas, he missed the action.

* * * * *

What is stunning about Bellarmine’s 24-1 success so far this year is that every team it’s played is taller, quicker and more athletic. But none has been as fundamentally sound. From court positioning, to footwork to defensive shading to blocking out to being where they’re supposed to be in a set all the time, to holding the ball properly. It’s a joy to watch.

The Knights have some athletically challenged guys. A few are severely slow. Others can’t jump over an envelope.

But they are an amazing team.

Scotty Davenport has done an incredible job.

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What I don’t understand about Davenport is why he spends most of every game railing at the refs. Incessantly. I’ve yet to attend a game that he hasn’t thought his team was screwed on some calls. Which he lets the offending ref know . . . every . . . single . . . trip . . . down . . . the . . . court. For the rest of the game.

It can’t help his cause.

And as marvelous as his coaching has been this year, this trait has to negatively impact his in-game focus.

* * * * *

Among the other things I’ve previously mentioned that make attending a game at Knights Hall so marvelous are these:

The smell of popcorn when you walk in the door.

That the crowd sings the national anthem.

The pep band on a stage at the end of the court, playing “Soul Man,” “Head Hunter,” and “Land of 1000 Dance.”

The Impellizzeri Pizza Halftime Shootaround.

The iPad giveaway.

That Jerry Lewis wannabe Myron Noodleman is an afterthought to the action on the court. (Unlike his minor league baseball appearances.)

– Seedy K

2 Comments

  1. Ernie Muppet
    Posted February 19, 2011 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    As always, Seedy, thanks so much for the tremendous Knights coverage. You are one of the few resources we can count on for it.

    Have to point out a couple of things, though. One, it is inaccurate to say that every team Bellarmine has played has been bigger. Quite the contrary, actually. BU’s starting five is “long” to put it in the current hoops vernacular and goes 6’8″, 6’7″, 6’7″, 6’5″, and 6’1″ or so. Heck, that matched up pretty well in the early win over Xavier which set the tone for the season.

    Also, while your point about some of our guys being not so athletic is well taken, Kendle, Dowe, and Jones are as athletic as they come.

    Anyway, keep up the good work!

  2. doug
    Posted February 20, 2011 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    First thing that hit me as I walked into Bellarmine gym Thursday night for first visit in 40 years was that same aroma of popcorn from yesteryear. I was hooked already.

    My season ticket holder friends warned me about Scotty D’s ref rants. Sure enough, he did disappoint in his constant “conversations” with the zebras. There were times the 3 of us basketball junkies couldn’t even imagine what calls he was contesting. It does have to take away some focus from the play at hand.

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