St. George's studs send Webb home
COLLIERVILLE -- "Sometimes you get the bear. Sometimes the bear gets you."
Webb coach Jeff Mitchell was reminded of the adage after his Feet fell 78-40 to No. 6 St. George's Independent in the quarterfinals of the Division II Small Schools tournament.
The Gryphons (18-4) simply had too much firepower as two of the top juniors in the country had their way with the local boys.
Laurence Bowers, a 6-foot-8 wing, returned from pneumonia and the passing of his grandmother to pour in 23 points. Elliot Williams, a 6-foot-3 guard, contributed 10 points. Neither player saw the floor in the fourth quarter.
"Those guys are two Division I basketball players," Mitchell said. "They were well-coached and really knew their strengths. When (Bowers) went to rebound, everyone else kicked out. It took us a half to realize you had better get your rear end back.
"It was a good experience. Our guys will remember that forever."
Heading into the contest, speculation swirled that the Feet didn't really have a concept of what they were about to face. After St. George's jumped out to a 26-4 lead in the first seven minutes, it became apparent.
Trailing 49-11 at halftime, Webb showed some promise early in the third period as Luke Baum nailed a pair of 3s and David Windham tallied a trio of field goals to keep pace with the Gryphons. Each team netted 29 points in the second half but the early margin was too much to overcome.
Hunter Foutch led the Bell Buckle boys with 12 points and scored in every quarter.
Webb's season comes to a close with a final record of 10-14 after a three-win season a year ago.
"We're not where we want to be, but it's a step in the right direction," Mitchell said.
"We had players go down with injuries and that kind of thing. Rhea Hyatt never played but a half of a game this year. I thought he was going to be our shooter. So, we had to have some of these new guys step up and they did. A lot of freshmen grew up quickly. Luke Baum and Hunter Foutch played a lot of minutes and ended up starting for half the season."
The Feet say good-bye to three seniors -- David Windham, Jin Woo Hong and Mic Floeter.
"I want to credit David Windham for his efforts this year. It's a tough way to go out," Mitchell said.
"Jin Woo hadn't played much at all year but had a great attitude. He came out and played a bunch today.
"We missed Mic and his efforts."
After winning a postseason contest and battling against college-ready talent, the Feet are left with a hunger to get better and a plan for the future.
"Now the key is the offseason. That's what this bunch has got to understand," Mitchell said. "You don't get better during the season. You get better by working in the offseason. We've got to get into a culture at Webb of getting into the weight room and having the discipline to have a shooting program."