USI guard Kenyon Smith appears to have returned to form after being slowed by a foot injury during the Bill Joergens Memorial Classic. Remember he had five steals against Cedarville last Saturday. But his offense was also impressive. Coach Rodney Watson particularly liked one play Smith made involving 6-9 post player Keith DeWitt.
“He drove the baseline and fed Keith for an alley-oop,” said Watson. “That was a back breaker.”
I remember that play. It came with 1:42 left in the game and put USI ahead by 10 points for the first time, at 66-56. Smith started things with a steal, then kind of flicked the ball up near the rim, where DeWitt grabbed it and jammed it through the hoop. Cedarville immediately called a timeout after that basket.
Smith also sank a key basket with 3:24 remaining, getting the ball at the key off a pass back to him from point guard Lawrence Thomas; that shot put USI ahead 62-54. Smith finished the game with five points, three rebounds, two assists and, of course, those five steals.
Getting him back at full strength in the defensive rotation will really put a damper on the opposition’s offense. Smith can seem to be everywhere at once. Sometimes, I think, just knowing he’s out on the court messes with opponents’ minds. It’s a very real consideration: Where’s he going to strike next?