Coming out of Minneapolis, freshman point guard Walter Power had to change his game.
Power was always looked at as a scorer and he played that way. All that changed when he came to CLC as his first priority was to get the offense revved up and his teammates involved.
So far this season Power has taken to the change well, averaging 4.2 assists a game. But, in a 61-57 win over the Ridgewater Warriors Saturday in the final game of the Pepsi Classic, Power was looked at to score.
Walter Power scored five points in the CLC victory.
CLC was leading 58-57 with 25 seconds remaining when Power took the inbounds pass, drove the lane and scooped in a layup for a three-point lead.
"The play was for the shooter to come off a screen and get the ball," Power said, "and if it wasn't there I'd go and get the ball. I was the backup. Since we were in the double bonus I just went straight to the cup."
Power also distributed the ball well, finishing with a game-high five assists. His ability to penetrate the lane, then find the open man, has made him the prototypical point guard every coach loves.
"Walt is going to be a very good point guard in the league as long as he improves and continues to listen," Raiders coach Jim Russell said. "He played a totally different style in high school where he was a scorer. I'm not asking him to be the scorer I'm asking him to get everyone else involved."
The Raiders turned a five-point halftime lead into 10 early in the second half on a Ben Hamill 3-pointer and two Chris Beckley baskets.
Then the Warriors went on a 13-0 run to capture a 42-39 lead. Two Louis Roseman free throws and a Leonard Langdon layin stopped the bleeding. Langdon led CLC with 14 points while Hamill finished with 13.
The lead would change hands nine times down the second-half stretch. Another Hamill three and a Langdon layup gave CLC a 58-55 lead late in the game.
Raiders 61, Ridgewater 57
The key: Walter Power's driving layup as the shot clock expired late in the game helped give CLC (6-5 overall) the win.
Next: CLC Classic, Jan. 6-7
But Ridgewater's Darren Solbrack, who scored 22 points to go along with 16 rebounds, scored to pull within one and set the stage for Power's heroics.
"We knew coming in that this was going to be a big challenge because Ridgewater is a pretty good ballclub," Russell said. "They switched to zone and it made us stand around a lot. The challenge for me was for us to have the intensity and make them catch up to us."
Ridgewater College 27 30 -- 57
Central Lakes 32 29 -- 61
Darren Solbrack 22, Dante Bogard 4, Chris Jones 2, Garrett Glazier 13, Adam Mesker 2, Peter Dusek 8, Julian Williams 6. Team totals: FG 20-61 (33 percent), FT 11-17 (65 percent). 3-point baskets: 6 (Solbrack, Bogard, Glazier 2, Dusek 2).
Louis Roseman 7, Chris Beckley 8, Ben Hamill 13, Walter Power 5, Leonard Langdon 14, Jahiah Porter 5, Adam Angell 5, Frank Johnson 4. Team totals: FG 20-62 (32 percent), FT 16-23 (70 percent). 3-point baskets: 5 (Hamill 3, Angell, Power). Overall -- 6-5.
Rebounds -- CLC 44 (Beckley 8, Roseman 8, Porter 7), RW 38 (Solbrack 16). Assists -- CLC 14 (Power 5), RW 11 (Jones 4). Turnovers -- CLC 11, RW 13.
TROY GUNDERSON can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5865.
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