Monday, April 30, 2007

Practice Observations

10-minute scrimmage right now. The Storm starts out with one of the practice squadders at the point joined by Katie Gearlds, Iziane Castro Marques, Wendy Palmer and Ashley Robinson. Brooke Queenan and Tye'sha Fluker are available as reserves, while Tanisha Wright is working the exercise bike. Shyra Ely went to the training room after, I'm told, apparently getting popped in the nose.

Shyra is back from the training room and ready to check in to the scrimmage.

Johan Petro is watching the action from a room upstairs looking out on the floor.

Great offensive rebound by Brooke Queenan, who joined camp late last week. Her putback attempt rolls around the rim and cruelly bounds out. Anne Donovan was not happy with her team's attention to the glass beyond Queenan, reminding them, "Our first job is to rebound."

Oh, and Mickaƫl Gelabale - the other half of the Sonics French Connection - is up there watching as well. Gelabale is wearing his game shorts. I'm really not sure why that is.

Anne takes timeout with a little less than four minutes left in the scrimmage and the practice squad just having taken a 12-11 lead. Penetration has been a problem for the Storm on defense during this scrimmage, and Anne wants to get that shored up.

Quick release from Katie Gearlds to beat the shot clock. It doesn't fall, but the Storm scores on the putback. Gearlds' form is so pure. She's running the point now.

Wendy Palmer with a pair of elbow jumpers. It doesn't appear her touch has suffered for her time off the court.

The Storm holds on for a 22-18 victory, with a Shyra Ely three-pointer in the final minute giving them the lead for good.

10 minutes on the clock as we start a second scrimmage. Katie opens up at the point once again.

Very pretty play in transition as Katie Gearlds draws the defense, then kicks to Izi Castro Marques for the three-pointer.

Izi is on fire from three-point range today, hitting at least three of them and maybe four between the two scrimmages. Still, it's Katie who has opened eyes with her shooting. Darren Fessenden of the P-I and I are shaking our heads at how cleanly her threes have a tendency to rip through the net. Double-teaming LJ and Sue has gotten a whole lot harder.

The second scrimmage is all Storm - final score 29-11. Really impressive shooting against the zone Coach Donovan asked the practice squad to play.

After splitting into posts and perimeter players (just three of them - Castro Marques, Ely and Gearlds) for shooting drills, we're done. Check back for an update after media availablity.

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