Wiesbaden, Germany | March 2, 2018
It had been nearly a decade since Baumholder won a basketball championship so the team had no qualms with slowing down the tempo and running off clock time in its Department of Defense Education Activity Division III championship game last weekend.
The coaching staff instructed players to pull out to the far corners of the court and play a game of keep-away in the final minutes against Brussels. The strategy paid off when Baumholder made key free throws and converted on two shot opportunities.
“We’ve done the four corners stall once or twice this season and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t,” Buccaneer guard Andrew Carter said. His defense was key when he joined fellow junior Solo Turgeon in putting bodies on Brussels players for all four quarters as well as an overtime stanza.
“I was an eighth grader when the last Baumholder team played in the finals and that was exciting to see,” junior guard Turgeon said. “Ansbach and Brussels are both amazing teams this year. They have big men and they know how to post up. It wasn’t easy at all.”
Baumholder missed four of five free throw attempts late but was able to hold on for the win thanks to the stall and two key misses underneath by the Brigands. The Brussels team only scored once in the OT and the Buccaneers stalled again when they got separation in the scoreboard.
“With this group we’ve always practiced four corners and clock management, trying not to give the opponent the ball,” Piggé said. “The defensive intensity was there for us and it really picked up toward the end of the fourth quarter and going into overtime. Nate Horton came through big time for us and Chandler hit a big shot at the end. Andrew Carter, aw, he’s amazing … very fundamentally sound. He does everything you tell him to do, but better. And this is actually his first year to play organized basketball. I am proud of these guys. They are great to be around each day and there’s no question they are champions.”