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More Ian Hummer observations.

Due to a lucky break flipping channels trying to find the Temple/St. Joe's game at home tonight, I was able to watch Princeton recruit Ian Hummer and Gonzaga play DeMatha for the WCAC Championship.

This was my second chance to see Hummer in action (you can read the other report from January 2009 here), and I've written up some detailed notes from tonight's game that you can read while watching video highlights after the jump.

Hummer, who had scored a total of 57 points the last two times Gonzaga played DeMatha, won the tap for his team.

I was impressed with how active Hummer was on offense without the ball. He repeatedly posted, spun and re-posted trying to get better position. His footwork helped him gain ideal spacing to receive an entry pass. This activity combined with what I saw the first time Hummer was on my TV, painted a very positive and more complete picture.

Fighting for position, an entry pass to Hummer was too hard to handle.

A high/low to Hummer calling for the ball while sealing off his man was finished with his right hand to put Gonzaga on the board.

Hummer, who was averaging 16 ppg and 11 rpg entering Thursday's game, knocked down a turnaround jumper off a second chance.

A shovel pass by Hummer out of the post to a cutting Tyler Thornton (Duke) cut Dematha's lead to 14-12.

Thornton returned the favor, finding Hummer on the drive, who finished with his right hand.

After one quarter Hummer had six points, a handful of rebounds and an assist.

Gonzaga broke DeMatha's press and Hummer went strong to the rim.

A nice pass to Hummer on the left baseline was followed by a power dribble and a shot off glass to even matters at 25.

Up by three, Hummer made a great catch on a lob, but his finish trickled off the rim.

At halftime Hummer had 10 and Gonzaga led by three.

Three plays from the start of the third quarter:

Hummer set a back screen that drove him out of bounds on the baseline as he remained horizontal for a good 10-12 feet.

Later Hummer came back inside the arc from up court to get a loose ball on the floor and draw a foul.

Running at full speed, Hummer timed a block from behind on what looked like a sure breakaway for DeMatha, smacking it clean.

Thornton spotted a cutting Hummer, who double-clutched off glass to make the score 43-40, Gonzaga.

The Eagles led by six after three quarters.

In the two games I have seen, Hummer has primarily scored inside, with a few short jumpers, so it was eye-opening to watch Hummer stand outside the three point line, shed his defender with a wicked crossover dribble that drew his man to the right and then take a long, quick first step that started a soaring layup off glass.

I've mentioned Hummer's hands before, and Hummer showed great control to grab a pass with his left hand and quickly throw a diagonal pass inside for a layup that gave Gonzaga a five point lead.

With the game in the balance, Gonzaga looked to get the ball in Hummer's hands every time down the floor.

Hummer dribbled down his man and split a double team, but a lefty hook rolled off.

Fouled with 2:59 to go, Hummer made one of two. The announcers said Hummer is shooting just 57% from the line this season. Something to work on.

The game was tied twenty seconds later and when Gonzaga had the ball again, Hummer lowered his shoulder and was hacked going up. This time his first free throw was good, his second no good.

Trailing by one, a posting Hummer was fouled, sending the senior center to the line for a one-and-one, Hummer converted both ends and Gonzaga led 59-58.

DeMatha retook the lead and Gonzaga went inside to Hummer, his short right-handed hook unable to get over the rim with :23 on the clock. Following a wild sequence where the Eagles turned the ball over at midcourt, stole it right back and had a layup blocked for a goaltend with nine seconds left, Gonzaga again had a one point edge.

But DeMatha scored on a layup with two seconds to go, as Hummer got caught in the middle of the paint between the arc and the baseline, allowing Naji Hibbert to sneak behind for the winning score.

A shot from beyond halfcourt was well short and DeMatha had won the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference title. Hummer stood with his hands on his head in disbelief.

The future Tiger finished with 18 points and (I believe and hope to confirm) a double figure rebound total. Hummer was 4-6 at the free throw line.

Conclusions, based on a very small sample size: I've seen Hummer once in person, at the reception honoring Coach Carril after the Dartmouth game two weeks ago, and I was surprised that he did not look bigger. I'm still surprised after watching tonight's game, as Hummer plays larger and stronger than you might think standing next to him. I still haven't seen enough of his game from outside of the paint, but the way he battles and works combined with his physicality, hands and fundamentals makes me understand why Coach Carril spoke so highly of Hummer (and fellow 2009 recruit Will Barrett) when giving his remarks at the Class of 1887 Boathouse.

Brian Martin said,

March 6, 2009 @ 9:44 am

10 rebounds according to Washington Post. With the recruits coming in our rebounding should improve immediately. No more games with 0 offensive rebounds or -15 or -20 on the boards. A few more rebounds would have made the difference in the Penn and Dartmouth losses.

Jon Solomon said,

March 6, 2009 @ 10:49 am

I've added some YouTube highlights to this piece.

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