September 9, 2004
NEMO Boys Earn Bronze At Show-Me Games
The United States men’s basketball took bronze in this summer’s Olympics and so to did the NEMO Boys basketball team at the state’s Olympics, the Show-Me State Games.
This eight-man team was assembled from six incoming freshmen and two incoming eighth graders to compete in the 2004 Missouri State Show-Me-Games 14-and-under age division.
“With only five practices together before the games they played very well considering most teams, which they faced play together year round,” said Coach Bob Courtright. “The boys each received a Bronze Medal for their 3rd place finish out of a 14-team field, which tells me that there are some very talented young players to watch in the upcoming basketball seasons in the Tri-Rivers conference.”
The local squad swept through the opening round of the tournament winning four straight games before falling to a team from St. Louis in the semi-finals.
The NEMO Boys opened the event against St. Charles Red Raiders on Friday, July 23rd. The team had a very balanced scoring attack, with all eight players getting in the scorebook.
NEMO led 14-6 after the first quarter and increased their lead to 31-14 by halftime. By the end of the 3rd quarter NEMO led 45-25 and cruised through the final period to pull away and win 59-30.
They were led in scoring by Scott McAfee with 12 points, followed closely by Jacob Winkler with 11 and Cody Musgrove with 10. Javis Vineyard added 8 points. Torey Weston put up 7 points, Colt Sommers added 6 points, Corey Shultz hit a 3-pointer and Brett Courtright added 2 points to round out the scoring.
The team took to the court on Saturday morning to do battle with Harrisonville
“This is the game most of these boys will remember for a long time as this game was played on the main floor of the Hearnes Center where the Missouri Tigers played their home games,” Courtright said. “It was an experience that I don’t think they will forget for a while.”
The surroundings didn’t seem to bother the boys much as they jumped out to a 17-5 lead at the end of the first quarter with six of the eight players scoring. They went on to win the game 55-19.
The NEMO Boys were led in scoring by Musgrove with 13 points and Winkler with 12 points.
Just four hours later the team was back at play taking on the Hollister Dawgs.
“This was a very important game to win as both teams came into the game undefeated within the division and the winner would get a bye into the single elimination tournament and wouldn’t have to play until Sunday morning,” Courtright said.
The game started off back and forth as both teams shot the ball extremely well.
The second quarter saw the NEMO Boys take control of the boards and Musgrove scored 11 of his game-high 20 points in this quarter to lead the NEMO Boys to a 31-22 halftime lead. The NEMO Boys won the game 60-38 to advance to the first round of the single elimination tournament by winning their division. Musgrove led the team in scoring with 20 points, followed closely by Sommers with 18.
West Plains was the next victim of the NEMO squad as the local team dispatched the opposition early Sunday morning.
The quarter-final game didn’t get off to a good start for the NEMO Boys as poor shooting hampered them throughout the game.
Sommers was the lone bright spot offensively early in the game as he scored 8 of his 20 points in the opening quarter to give the NEMO Boys a 13-12 lead.
The shooting woes continued in the 2nd quarter but they still managed to play good enough defense to take a slim 2-point advantage of 31-29 at halftime.
The NEMO Boys opened up the game in the 3rd quarter as their defense set the tone by forcing several West Plains turnovers, which in turn led to several fast break lay-ups. By the end of the 3rd quarter the NEMO Boys led 49-37 and never looked back the rest of the way outscoring West Plains 13-12 in the 4th quarter to take the win 62-49 and advance to the semi-final round later that day.
Sommers led the team in scoring with 20 points. McAfee added 10 points Winkler had 9 and Musgrove had 7.
The team’s tournament run end Sunday afternoon against the St. Louis Ballers.
“This game got off to a terrible start for the NEMO Boys as they committed four consecutive turnovers to start the game and this led to four fast break lay-ups for the Ballers and kind of set the tone for most of the first quarter,” Coach Courtright said.
It was midway through the 1st quarter before the NEMO Boys finally got on the scoreboard with a jumper from Vineyard but trailed 16-2 at the time.
The NEMO Boys opened the 2nd quarter with Weston hitting a 3-pointer and came back out strong outscoring the Ballers 13-6 in the quarter to cut the lead to single digits at 21-30 by half time.
The 3rd quarter saw the Ballers extend their lead back up to 10 points by outscoring the NEMO Boys 14-13 and taking a 44-34 lead at the end of the quarter. The 4th quarter was much the same as the 3rd as the two teams traded baskets throughout the period and the NEMO Boys were outscored by 2 points this quarter and were eliminated from the tournament by a disappointing final score of 59-47.
Sommers finished the game with 13 points. Winkler had 10 points, and Musgrove added 9 points.
“After we finally broke the ice and got on the board the boys settled down a bit and played pretty well,” Courtright said. “We started this game a bit intimidated I think, as the Ballers are a 4A school team from St. Louis which plays in a youth league year round and are extremely tall and quick, but once the boys calmed down and started to play with some confidence they did fine. We just dug ourselves into too big of a hole early and couldn’t get back out. I was very proud of the fact that the boys didn’t quit when we were down 16 to start the game and ended up only losing by 12, so we played this team better than even for 3 and ˝ quarters. It was just that first 5 minutes of the game that killed us. ”