By Mark Jurgena
For the Times-Tribune
The Collinsville Hawks AAU team had a productive June at tournaments in Cape Girardeau, Mo. and Wichita, Kan. They went 10-2 between the two tourneys.
“They have progressed well in a short time,” said coach Andy Horras. “I have been surprised at how well they have done considering the limited practice time and the fact they hadn’t participated in any team sports since mid-March. Our goal was just to try to restore their cardio and to get the older and younger kids to get to know each other as teammates. They have surpassed these goals and are really playing well as a team.”
At the Cape Girardeau Summer Sizzler tourney, they went 4-0 including a title game victory.
“In Cape, the competition was good across the board,” Horras began. “They played well but their lack of stamina after being off for so long showed up in the semifinals and finals. Five games in two days resulted in some tired legs which negatively affected our defense and shooting.”
In the championship game against the Illinois Bears, De’Ante Franklin hit the game winning three to give the Hawks a 45-42 win and the title.
“He’s a three-point specialist with a long history of making game winners,” said Horras.
The game winner was off a fake pick and roll with Nate Hall.
“Nate Hall impacted every aspect of the game including the little things beyond scoring. His high ball screen at the end resulted in the game winning shot,” Horras said.
Before the title game they registered a 41-30 win over Exclusive Paducah of Kentucky. Hall had 15 points and six rebounds. Jackson Lee and Matt Clark also had six boards.
SEMO Select was another victim as the Hawks picked up a 49-36 win. Dayton Horras had 13 points with Travion Swygeart collecting six boards.
The Hawks blew out Team Thunder from Memphis, Tenn. 55-20. Swygeart had 20 points and Clark collected seven boards.
“Trayvion Swygeart had an all around great tournament and scored a lot. Jackson Lee is emerging as a high level defender and rebounder. He is also scoring consistently,” said Horras.
In Kansas, the Hawks went 4-2 for the weekend on their way to a 43-30 win over the Texas Clutch in the championship.
“In Wichita, the competition was less balanced than Cape. We saw some weaker teams in pool play and some very good teams in bracket play. What really stood out was their balance. Scoring and rebounding was shared by several players and everyone stood out at one point or another. On the whole, they played much better in Wichita than in Cape as there was less “rust” in the second week of playing,” Horras said.
In the title game against the Clutch, Chambers and Swygeart each scored 11 points in a 62-27 win over the Wichita Wolfpack. Hall grabbed 11 boards.
“The game was back and forth until Nate attacked from the wing and dunked the ball over their defender in traffic. It was a college level play and really changed the momentum of the game. Jackson Lee got a breakaway dunk later in the half and the highlight of the game was an alley-oop pass from Travion to Nate Hall to seal the game,” said Horras.
Swygeart led the way in scoring again with 16 points in the title win over the Clutch. Lee had eight boards.