The Storm Lake boys basketball team had mixed results here Friday night at a Jamboree competition, according to first-year coach Jeff Brennan.
A group of players expected to provide depth for Storm Lake beat Galva-Holstein 34-31, but the team's top one through nine players lost to a hot-shooting Sibley-Ochedeyan team, 46-30.
"The Jamboree indicated that we need to work on a lot of things, especially learning to play better man to man defense," Brennan said Sunday night.
In the first game, the Tornadoes hit some key shots down the stretch to beat Galva-Holstein. Six-foot-3 Storm Lake post player Alex Kwikkel led the way with 13 points while guard Logan Masters added ten points.
"It was a good opportunity for those kids to get some solid varsity minutes in," Brennan said. "As a group, they played pretty well and I thought Alex played well in the post and Logan shot the ball very well."
It was a different story in the second game, as Sibley Ochedeyan was 12 of 15 in the first quarter of the two-quarter game and hit six three pointers in that first frame.
Before the Tornadoes could take a collective breath, they were down 10-0.
"They shot the ball extremely well, but we still have to play better man-to-man defense," Brennan said of the group that played the second game. "We didn't do a good job of getting up and guarding their shooters, or of recognizing them."
Sibley Ochedeyan slapped a 2-2-1 full-court press on Storm Lake early in the first quarter and Brennan said his team didn't handle it well.
"I was disappointed with that, because we had worked a lot in practice against it," he said. "We've got to take better care of the basketball in those types of situations."
Offensively for Storm Lake, 6-4 senior forward Nick Kurtz finished with a team-high seven points while 6-4 junior forward Ryan Brandt added six.
"Offensively, we didn't shoot the ball very well, and we're going to have to do better than that in our upcoming games.
"We did a good job of setting our offense up, we just didn't knock down our shots. But we got down early and it didn't help matters that we didn't set up well against their press."
Brennan added that his team played better defense in the second quarter. But clearly, Sibley Ochedeyan is a team that shoots the ball extremely well.
"They're a good basketball team and I think they return five starters from last season," Brennan said. "You can tell some of their kids have spent a lot of time in the gym during the offseason."
Brennan said he would like his team to get right back into game action, but that won't happen this week. The Tornadoes are idle until Dec. 9.
"That's probably not a good thing at this point," he said. "You can practice all you want, but you just can't simulate game situations in practice."
Meanwhile, Brennan assessed the Tornadoes season prospects in light of the Jamboree.
"We've got to play better man to man defense and communicate better on the floor," he said. "On the defensive end (Friday night) lack of communication hurt us when we didn't get through some screens for their better shooters.
"And we have to learn to handle the press better and avoid the turnovers. Not playing good defense and turnovers were the two main reasons we got beat Friday night."
In the other Jamboree action Friday night, Lakes Conference team Cherokee routed Class 1A Odebolt Arthur.