Part Two: Gunn routs Summit by 40 in cage opener
This being “Silicon Valley”, well, I tend to call it “Santa Clara Valley” and in, “I played for the 1980-81 Titans, champions of the SANTA CLARA VALLEY Athletic League”, I did a very modern, even pomo thing, I posted to the internet a partial score, five minutes into the Gunn Titans basketball season, Gunn lead by 25, literally, 25-0 at the quarter; you might think or guess I was writing about a team that won its first 13 games. But these are the Titans not the Warriors (who have won 11 straight and stand 16-2).
I shot about 27 photos at the game and will update more here.
I think the coach is Travis Williamson. (I mean, Brandynn Williams — there was a Travis Williamson on the vintage Packers teams however, no relation, although Brandynn has coached current Packer star DaVante Adams) One thing I noted is that he looked very happy to see the Summit coaches, Kheaton Scott, head coach, and Steve Brown, assistant. Gave them soul-hugs. Kheaton is a coaching protégée of Peter Diepenbrock; he was, in my opinion, the best athlete by far on the 2006 Paly state champions. Brown meanwhile was Jeremy Lin’s best friend from 5th grade to a few months ago. They have drawn a tough assignment, although I have been hearing good to great things about the Redwood City based charter school. I didn’t know charter schools had athletics.
One of my highlights was second half a number 32 took a rebound and dribbled it up floor, went behind his back to get a better view of the lane, passed it up to a team mate who got an easy layup. Towards the end of the game, I climbed to top of the new gym — this was my first game there, although it is the Titan’s second season there — to take a long shot, and I met one of the dads. Mr. Dorward, and he said it was his boy, 6’2″ “Luke” I think, who made that play, and one similar, a leading pass. “I was thinking ‘That kid is the point guard'” I said to him. Not sure if two plays make a point guard, and in truth the Titans may need him more on the boards, but that is what pre-season or non-league or December high school hoops is all about.
The actual point guard is named Sun. His mother is named Winnie (but maybe not Sun?). She was taking tickets at door and I chatted her up a spell. Her boy is #12 a sophomore on varsity. When he came out the first thing I said to her was “he went thru his legs”. In warm-ups. She asked “that’s not hard, don’t they all do it?’. He was announcing himself. There was also a #13 the lone black on the team, smallish, and obviously another point guard. Nifty, but fallible. Like I said, it’s December.
The kid who did the inbound one foot from me at the Alumni Game I posted about earlier, is named Russell I learned. He has a nice touch. He hit a three at the half. He might have reached 20 last night, maybe the high scorer.
Matt Passell, a co-captain or at least a starter for the 22-5 Champions of 1979-1980, send to look out for Gil. Gil did put on quite a fake to go baseline early in game and score. Kind of a crazy-legs Hirsh vibe. Matt didn’t realize, and I only knew because I was chatting up the brother Jesue Gil a recent stalwart, from bench of the previous game or exhibit, that both boys are nephews of Gunn 1980 Javier Gil a football standout.
There are a set of under-nourished but promising and exciting brothers on this team, a sophomore and senior, one has knee troubles to boot, something hyphenated, Cruising-Leeper or such.
I saw a fair amount of talent out there. This is not a doormat. They do remind me of the scrappy football Titans I caught all 10 tilts of. In fact I think that #45 who came in as a sub was Noah Riley the Titans QB. His brother David Riley was all-league 2-guard or wing for the 2006 Titans, and then starred at little Whitworth up in Washington. I saw the dad there at least – -although I went to all 10 football matches, I do not recognize the players with their helmets off and without numbers.
I met a kid named Donat who graduated recently and said his dad is Peter Donat the former Dartmouth lacrosse player, Psi U and First Data honcho, although they split before I could trade Dartmouthisms dollars for donats.
Principal Denise Herrmann was i.d.h. and shot a group of 6th men/women. I saw, Radin maybe, wearing a Class of 2015 Seniors t-shirt with a clever play on Shepherd Fairy: D15obey. (disobey)
Later I will check on wrestling and soccer, if only to get updates on the footballers I have been tracking, especially Maltz and Kasznik. (Rothstein?)
I think Gunn is in Los Gatos tourney next, unless I am reading that off an old ghost web page. I also owe a football wrap-up. I think I have 200 photos of football. I have 40 total hoops shots, 27 last night and probably 13 from alumni game. I rang Tom Dubois a Gunn parent and Council-elect, and Camille Townsend, PAUSD trustee to urge their support for the team.
i. post-modern screen capture of how this looked for the previous 12 hours until 10 minutes ago, a lay-in by one of the starters, not the first but fifth of the season. The first may have been by Steinberg, one of their biggest players, strongly built.
ii. gunn Principal Denise Herrman shooting the spirit section 6th Man/Girl
iii. I had never seen a shut-out in a quarter or first quarter especially of high school hoops, Gunn 25, Summit (ironic name) nadir
iv. 22 one of the brothers shooting from the wing — oh, yeah, either I said to myself or Matt “Naps” Passell commented post-game ”they passed well” — 30 and one other boxing out, 21 I think Gil looking for a piece and the other brother at top, might have initiated it — they all look kind of alike I have to say.
v. Sun the point guard got into foul trouble but otherwise the officials let the lads run, and no disrespect that I was fitting the reserve forward as a 6′ 2″ guard based on two good plays. I like the moxie of 12. Did I mention that the black reserve point I called “nifty” wore my old number #13? I was not nifty, I tried hard in practice.
edit to add, 18 days later: prophetically, Gunn is off to a 6-1 start and won the Prospect Tournament title, with Gil as MVP, and avenging the footballers losses to Prospect and Branham.
The Gunn boys wrapped up the Panther Invitational by capturing the tournament title on Friday night with a 65-53 victory over the host team in Saratoga. The Titans improved to 6-1 heading into the holiday break. Gunn junior Alex Gil, who scored 14 points, was named tournament Most Valuable Player after scoring 62 points in three victories. Teammates Chris Russell and David Lee-Heidenreich finished with 16 and 14 points, respectively.
posted by Ravi Shah, manager on Dec 19, 2014 at 10:24 pm
I think the coach is a former Paly player better known as Brandynn Williams. Reid of the News:
(Chris) Russell, whose range is around 28 feet from the basket, hit his final 3-pointer of the night. Two free throws by David Lee with 1:05 to play put the Titans up 11 points and into the tourney final. Russell finished with nine boards and three blocks, while Gil-Fernandez had four rebounds, two blocks and a pair of steals.
Later that day, the day I met the coach at Peets: Gunn coach is Brandyn Williams; there is or was a Travis Williams who was a kick return sensation for Vince Lombardi’s NFL football Packers, in 1967, I would doubt there is a relation.