The Reitz High School boys’ basketball team went 4-0 over the holiday week with wins over Mount Carmel, Princeton, Lawrenceville, and Castle by an average scoring margin of +49.0. Here are some leftover topics of interest that didn’t make the Sunday print edition.
Where is Dru Smith?
After playing in the opening round of pool play against Mount Carmel in the Toyota Classic, the Reitz junior missed the final three games after undergoing surgery to remove bone fragments in his knee.
“God bless his heart,” Panthers head coach Michael Adams said. “He’s been playing with it and hasn’t been healthy all year. We thought it was tendinitis until a few games ago when it was really swollen. So they went and checked it out and removed bone fragments from his knee. We’re hoping on Thursday (Jan. 1) he’ll be released and can start rehab. But we don’t expect him to be out very long.”
Smith has been a vital cog atop of the Reitz vaunted 1-2-2 three-quarter court zone trap this season. He’s second on the team with an average of 4.5 steals per game in addition to scoring 10.6 points and 6.2 rebounds per contest.
The Class 4A No. 6-ranked Panthers (8-0) are coming off a week in which they averaged 103.5 points per game in capturing back-to-back Toyota Classic titles.
Can this team play any better?
Of course they can, according to Coach Adams.
“We’re basketball purists,” he said. “We play every possession where there’s a winner and a loser. Obviously, we aren’t holding teams scoreless. There are some possessions where our guys jumped the gun (on defense) trying to run the floor and get out in transition too soon. There’s some positioning issues. Fundamentally, not turning the ball over in spots you need to be more careful. And there’s some shot selection concerns. None of this is to say we’re not very pleased with what we’ve seen. As coaches, we want perfection knowing we’ll never get there. We just have to stay hungry.”