Tuesday, 23rd April 2024

7/23/2011: PTL Championship preview

Posted on 23. Jul, 2011 by in Iowa Basketball


By Brendan Stiles


The 2011 edition of the Prime Time League comes to an end Sunday afternoon when No. 3 Falbo Bros Pizza/Culver’s of Coralville and No. 1 Coach’s Corner/Two Rivers Bank & Trust meet in the PTL Championship. Tip-off is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. inside the Roberts Gym at the North Liberty Community Center.

Through the course of this summer, these were the two most consistent PTL squads, so it’s not the least bit surprising that these two teams are playing. On July 5, Falbo/Culver’s and Corner/Rivers played in what Iowa guard Devyn Marble tweeted was the best PTL game this summer. Sophomore forward Melsahn Basabe sent the contest to overtime with a buzzer-beating bucket, but his Falbo/Culver’s squad ultimately fell to Corner/Rivers, 121-114. It was the only PTL game all summer that wasn’t settled in regulation.

However, Corner/Rivers (6-2) is a different team than it was at the start of the month. Anthony Hubbard, a junior who was the fourth overall selection by Corner/Rivers in this summer’s PTL draft, left the Iowa men’s basketball program on July 14. On the night Corner/Rivers beat Falbo/Culver’s, Hubbard had 36 points and shot 13-of-23 from the floor. In seven PTL games, Hubbard averaged 23.7 points and 11.4 rebounds per contest.

Although his absence from the lineup is noteworthy, so was Corner/Rivers’ ability to reach this game without him, defeating No. 5 Jill Armstrong of Lepic-Kroeger Realtors 92-82 in the PTL semifinals on July 19. Upper Iowa’s Joey Woods provided a big chunk of the scoring with 30 points and Iowa senior walk-on Jordan Stoermer played his best game of the summer finishing with 17 points on 5-of-10 shooting.

As for Falbo/Culver’s (6-3), it reached this point by beating No. 6 McCurry’s/Mike Gatens Real Estate in the first round on July 17, 104-91, then getting its first win in three attempts this summer over No. 2 Iowa City Ready Mix/Vinton Merchants in the semifinals on July 19, 97-86. Falbo/Culver’s is led by its Hawkeye trio of Basabe, senior guard Matt Gatens, and freshman forward Aaron White, and all three played a prominent role in the semifinal win over Ready Mix/Merchants.

Basabe shot 11-of-17 from the floor to finish with 27 points and nine rebounds, while Gatens finished with 20 points and seven assists and White had 18 points and nine rebounds. In the previous meeting with Corner/Rivers, Basabe had his best performance of the summer with a double-double consisting of 36 points — including his end-of-regulation basket — and 20 rebounds, while Gatens had 26 points and White had 19 points and eight boards.

The PTL championship might not live up to the same billing Round 1 between these two squads did earlier in the month, but it’s only appropriate that Sunday’s game is the encore.

*Be sure to visit HawkeyeDrive.com following Sunday’s action for complete coverage of the 2011 Prime Time League Championship game, as well as a final rundown on July 25 of how each member of the Iowa Hawkeyes fared in the PTL over the course of the summer.*


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