After their 3rd Place finish in Miami (TX) at the Warrior Classic, Coach Clint Conkin travels his charges to White Deer, TX for the aptly named White Deer Classic.
As a lead up to this tournament, Clarendon made a quick trip to Vega (TX) and handed the home team a 66-52 loss. The Broncos are starting to develop depth, which at the 2A level makes them a very dangerous team. Although Senior F/P 6'5" Jamal Butler is the leader of this group, you can see the younger guys beginning to step up. Against Vega, it was Freshman Guard Jmaury Davis who dropped a 20 piece in the win, accentuated with a nasty facial dunk where he came down the lane and showed he was BOSS. Butler chipped in with 12.
The White Deer Tournament is a round robin affair with a total of 5 games; 2 each on Thursday, Friday and a final game on Saturday.
Clarendon 76 White Deer 23
It's hunting season and the Broncos bagged their limit before Coach Clint Conkin called off his pressure and they cruised in the pasting. I don't recall seeing too many high school games where the winners had almost 30 steals. This game's big scoring honors went to Sophomore Lamarcus Penigar. The PG who also was the Clarendon QB this year had 20 points/4 assists/5 steals to set the tone.
2023 Jmaury Davis had 13/5 rebounds/7 steals. 2021 Donovan Thompson added 10 points/5 assists/7 steals and the Senior leader, Jamal Butler had 13 points/9 boards/5 assists.
Clarendon 52 Amarillo (JV) 33
Claredon "out athleted" the Sandies for the win, but it was a good test for the Broncos to meet a group that was structured and fundamentally sound. I've known Amarillo Varisty Coach Jason Pillion for a number of years and he's one of the best at instilling fundamentals in his teams which are routinely among the best of West Texas' large schools year in and year out.
This game was in sharp contrast to the contest vs White Deer as Clarendon was limited to 10 steals and was forced to get in some useful work running their half court sets. In the end, although they were made to work for it the Sandies had a lot of trouble stopping the dribble drive of the more athletic Broncos guards.
Guard Collin Butler put together his most complete game of the young season as he had 11 points/5 rebounds for the Maroon. This team has balance as Davis added 10, Ballard 9 and Jamal Butler also had 10.
Clarendon 59 Booker 28
Looking forward with anticipation to this afternoon's match up with Gruver and their tough post man, Jalin Conyers. I've yet to see the 6'6" 230 lb Oklahoma Sooners commit at Tight End, but I've heard he's a D1 level basketball talent as well. Should be fun to watch him and Clarendon's Jamal Butler go at it.
Butler tuned up for that upcoming game by leading the Broncos past Booker with 18 points/9 boards and Frosh Jmaury Davis had 9 points/9 steals....yes, NINE STEALS! Phenomenal!
Clarendon 62 Gruver 50
Well, that's what a high level Division One athlete looks like. They're built different and they have a different mindset. If you don't meet them head on they'll roll right over you, and that's exactly what Oklahoma Sooners tight end prospect Jalin Conyers did to Clarendon.
Yes, the referees seemed to be fan boys as well but that's no excuse for Clarendon not being physical in return. He went where he wanted, did what he wanted and owned the backboard for the first 12 minutes of the game. Yes, he's big strong and talented, but Clarendon has talent also. Sometimes you can give your opponent too much respect. It was not competitive in any way until mid way through the 2nd quarter when freshman Jmaury Davis went at Conyers in the lane. Jmaury's mindset is to attack the rim and to dunk everything. I love that about him and although that didn't happen Conyers was sent to the bench with his second foul and Davis went to the free throw line. I really have respect for a FRESHMAN that doesn't care about someone else's press clippings. From that point forward the Broncos raised their level of play and began to compete.
Eventually late in the second half they closed the gap and had a chance late in the game with Gruver holding a 4 point lead. However, their bench was already depleted by the absence of their other promising freshman, Sylvester Ballard. Couple that with the rising foul count and Clarendon barely had enough bodies. Senior Collin Butler toughed out a leg injury of his own the entire 2nd half and even with all that, the Broncos played the last minute with only 4 players on the court.
Statistically Freshman Jmaury Davis had 13 points/7 rebounds. Junior Donovan Thompson had 14 points/8 rebounds and 2021 LaMarcus Penigar had 10 points/9 boards. There's a likelihood that these two teams can meet down the road later in the season. Clarendon can use this as a learning experience. You must meet FIRE with FIRE from the opening tip, don't let Conyers (or any physical post player) set up camp in the low blocks without a fight to establish position.
When healthy Clarendon's signature press must impose their will on the Gruver guards as is their calling card. After rolling most foes this season the Broncos can and I believe will use this as a learning point and be much stronger for their playoff run. I'll look forward to that.
I wasn't on hand for Saturday's game as I was watching my daughter in law's game being streamed on the internet from Ferol, Spain. As usuall she took care of business as they cemented their 1st place position in the standings. They've only lost once this season and she's in the top 5 in almost every category. Points. rebounds, steals, assists and plus/minus. She didn't shoot the ball much today and finished with 6 points, about 9 below her season average, but she did have 11 rebounds. She hangs her hat on rebounding because it's a mindset.
Coach Ivany's Pro Tip of the Day:
I mention that in this post as it's a critical part of who you are as a basketball player. Does your jumper define your game, or does your game define your jumper? What does this mean? Some players only measure their game by how many points you score. What if you are having an off day, getting double teamed etc? What else do you bring to your team? Do you still defend with 100% effort? Do you go get a rebound? Do you involve your team mates? If the answer is no, then you're not a very good player, even if you typically score points. Understand this about the game of basketball and you'll instantly become a bigger asset to your team.
Clarendon 66 Sunray 26
battered and bruised, the Clarendon Broncos finished up the White Deer Classic with another lopsided win. Lamarcus Penigar had 10 points. He was the most consistent player for the Broncos over the 5 game tournament. Coach Clint Conkin went deep into his bench and it was next man up with Ivan Gonzalez answering the bell and leading the team in scoring with 23 points. Senior Collin Butler was the only other Bronco in double figures.
Clarendon next plays at home Tuesday, December 16th.