Scene Report: Prep Hoops, DeLaSalle vs. Blake

DeLaSalle vs. Blake, DeLaSalle High School, Mpls, MN, 2/2/12
Last night I hoofed it across the Hennepin bridge a few blocks from where I hold down my day job a well-dressed nice guy to make my inaugural visit to home of gym of the Islanders.  In all my time here in the TC, I had never previously been inside my father's former high school.  I was shocked that I only had to drop a five spot to get in, rather than the seven dollar price tag every other school is asking.  Like most schools, the old HDD press pass wasn't getting me anywhere at D either.  But at least I saved a couple bucks that could be used on concessions.  I grabbed a Snickers, a bag of Fritos, and the old fav, Diet Coke.  (My Coke Rewards, bitch!)  I quickly found a seat right next to the Czar.  Would this be the night that I actually strike up convo with him?  Sadly, no.  But I did snag a ninja pic.  The first thing I notice about the gym is that it's hot as hell and it stinks like sweat.  I am immediately taken back in time to my own days as a player at the good old BHS gymnasium.  Which reminds me, D beat us in the first round of our first ever run at the State Tourney back in '88. And sure enough, there is the banner hanging over on the wall to prove it.  They took it all home that year, while we went on to take the long since abandoned Consolation prize.  AKA-seventh place...out of eight.  (I wasn't playing on varsity yet, btw. I'm not that old.)  I haven't been in a gym early enough to catch the National Anthem in quite a while.  Not sure who is responsible, because I can't force myself to look, but it is a horrendous rendition this evening.   The match-up tonight is intriguing to me because it's two of the top-ranked teams in 3A in the state.  Blake is #4 while D sits right behind them in the middle at #5.  A win for either of them would likely move them up.  The game starts with back-to-back ball possession violation calls.   D goes on a 9-0 run to start the game.  The Blake student section have some unique cat-calls they do while D players are at the line.  Specifically, they yell the names of different famous female personalities--Toni Braxton!  Renee Zellweger! Julia Louis-Dreyfus!  Imagine you are standing at the free throw line, and right when you go to release the ball, someone screams "Sarah Jessica Parker!" at you.  Funny.  I respect that.  DeLaSalle, unlike most schools these days, actually has a band that plays at games.  And they are very good too.  D eventually wins the game by nine points, but not without first seeing a couple monster dunk by Blake's high-scorer Kebu Johnson.  D's most impressive player is 6'6" sophomore forward Reid Travis. He blocks shots, rebounds, dunks, and can hit the tre.  It will be interesting to see how he developes over the next couple seasons.  The teams split wins for the regular season, and I split for Snap Fitness, as I am feeling guilty about  all this junk food.

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