You might think that after 31 years and 94 seasons of the Tucson Basketball League, that I would learn...but nooooo! Heading into the first full week of games, I had one of our scorekeepers contact every single team that was scheduled to play. She confirmed that the teams were in the league for the Fall season and that they knew when their game was and that they would show up. (Of course, there are always a couple knuckleheads who respond to the text that says "Your team is scheduled to play at 2:00 on Sunday. Please confirm that you are in the league this season and that you will be there" with "Thank you.")
So everybody was all set for the first week of games and three teams just flat didn't show up. No emails, no texts, no phone calls. Nothing. Three forfeits, hundreds of dollars lost, three teams upset that they showed up for nothing. (Another team called a couple hours before their game time and said that they couldn't make it because "everybody on their team got sick." Yeah...no.) Unless they all ate the same gas station sushi, there's no damn way that they all got sick in early September. None of these four teams will play this season and if they ever want to play in the future, they will have to pay in full in advance. That, of course, is what every other league in the world does, but, apparently, we'll never catch on to that logic.
In Sunday's games:
--Gotem 57, MedShield 50 - Zeke Odina, consistently one of the best players in the league, had another great game, scoring 23 points and grabbing eight rebounds i Gotem's win. Dalton Groenewold had a monster game for MedShield with 26 points and 18 rebounds in a losing effort.
--The Hurricanes 48, Goober Gang 43 - Andrew Arvayo scored 17 points and pulled down seven rebounds in The Hurricanes' debut in the Tucson Basketball League. Jaylen Volz and Enrique Sparkman combined for 30 points and 12 boards for the Goober Gang (which is a team name that will strike fear in the opposition).
--Kareem Abdul JaBallers 47, Barrio Benchmen 41 - Adam Gonzales hit five threes in leading the JaBallers.
--Scout Team 53, Just a Game 38 - This was a solid win for the Scout Team. Tom Olla led all scorers with 22 points and he also pulled down 11 rebounds. Oscar Valdez led Just a Game with 12 points.
Finally, we have this first-person account from Gerrit Vande Mheen as to what happened with his Icy Hots team against Scrap Attack: Blew a 15-point second half lead.....(Sean) Roebuck buried a three with about 20 seconds to go to give them a 1-point lead, and then Juwaun bailed us out with a back-down little floater with 10 seconds left....got out of there with a 1-point victory....