No. 2 Charlestown came into BC High yesterday with a high ranking to protect and completed their mission. It was not easy, however, as two of the Townies' top players -- juniors Tyrese Hoxter and Tyrik Jackson -- got into foul trouble early on, and had to sit during most of the third quarter.
After going over the film, I noticed something about Charlestown’s team: Tyrese Hoxter is the key to their success. They have one of the most talented rosters in the MIAA, but Hoxter is the player that can help separate them from the rest with his aggressive and athletic play.
Here is a video breakdown of why Charlestown cannot afford to have Hoxter in foul trouble often:
Before I jump into the offensive side of the ball, I want to harp on why Hoxter got in foul trouble. Coach Edson Cardoso told our correspondent Corey Allen, “We are an aggressive team, but we have to play with a little more poise.”
There is no doubt that Hoxter suffered from being overly aggressive on defense.
In the first clip, Hoxter is playing defense straight up and reaches a little bit. He was trying to prevent the pass to an open Jameilen Jones, but should have been closing out with his knees bent and hands up. His length would have stopped the pass anyways. In the second and third clip, Jones was simply reaching and the referee caught him. The last clip actually was not called as a foul, but it could have been. The ref let the little bump on Jameilen Jones happen, but this would have been a critical foul since it happened early on in the game.
Hoxter needs to play with a little more poise on defense because his team needs him in the game.
Hoxter is what I like to call a “momentum shifter”. He is the type of player who makes athletic plays that frustrate the defense and change the momentum of the game. He is like Devin Hester; he makes big plays that many people will have a hard time stopping.
In this game, Hoxter only had 12 points, but as you will see from the clips, many of his baskets were loud points.
In the first clip, Hoxter puts his athleticism on display by making an acrobatic lay up in transition. In the second clip, Hoxter makes an unlikely lay up with 0.1 seconds left (he did get it off in time). This put his team up 44-29. There’s a big difference from being down 13 points at the half and 15 points.
The last play is just one of Hoxter’s dazzling passes. This is not a strong point in his game, but this just shows his ability to get the job done.
In the third quarter, when Hoxter picked up his fourth foul, BC High went on a 12-3 run. Without him, it gave Rony Fernandez more time with the ball in his hands. This is not necessarily a bad thing, considering that Fernandez is one of the elite drive-and-kick distributors in the MIAA. Here are a few clips of him creating for his teammates.
As you can see in all three clips, Fernandez has a knack for getting his teammates wide-open looks from outside. He beats his man with his quick first step, draws the defense, and finds his open teammates.
The only problem with this is that without Hoxter and Jackson in the game, Charlestown becomes a different team. They become a team that shoots a lot of three-pointers. In this game, the strategy worked. With Omar Orriols becoming a legitimate threat from beyond the arc, this strategy will help Charlestown beat many teams. When shots do not fall, however, this strategy can become a problem.
When Hoxter is not in, Fernandez is forced to be the one who gets to the basket, which is not necessarily one of his strengths.
These two clips are an example of Fernandez having to drive and force shots when Hoxter is not in.
When Hoxter is in, Fernandez can play to his strengths.
As you can see from these three clips, the backcourt duo of Fernandez and Hoxter will be very difficult for many MIAA teams to guard. Their drive-and-kick play works both ways. When Fernandez drives (as seen in the first two clips), this allows Hoxter to get room to drive to the hoop or to get an open lay up near the hoop. When Hoxter drives (as seen in the last clip), it allows Fernandez to knock down open shots.
Year after year, Charlestown has some of the most talented players in the city. This year is no different with their backcourt of Hoxter and Fernandez. They have the size of a college backcourt and good chemistry.
After seeing what Charlestown was like without Hoxter, I came to the conclusion that they need him if they want to be an elite team this year.