Monday, February 20, 2006

Love & Basketball

No...we are not talking about the 2000 sports-romance movie starring Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan. We're talking...Kevin Love. The 6-foot-10 junior center out of Lake Oswego, Oregon that is attracting a larger audience these days than that romance story pulled into multi-plexes around the nation. Kevin Love is a hot prospect being courted by the largest colleagic basketball factories in the USA. Love's celebrity status is drawing a lot of attention. So much so, that ESPN U television network recently taped Lake Oswego's home game against Three Rivers League challenger Oregon City High School. Although the game may not have been impressive to a national TV audience, Love sure was. He kicked in 37 points, captured 22 rebounds and basically owned the key on defense as the Lakers rolled to a 68-48 victory. Love and basketball...coming to a television network near you...and get ready for the fall of 2007 premier at a college campus, yet to be named.

Kevin Love towering over the Oregon City defense.

Good luck trying to stop a 6-foot-10 center when he wants to head to the hoop.

The standard "impromptu" cheerleader shot.

Close up, it may look like the crowd is going wild, but look behind "the crowd."

Love is getting as comfortable with the post game interviews as he is at the freethrow line.

Friday, February 17, 2006

January Hoops

Back in my high school days, when I was the Photo Editor of the Jesuit Crusader, I loved shooting basketball. My arsenal...a Nikon F, a Vivitar 285 strobe and good old Tri-X. It's been decades since then, and I find myself walking into the same gyms that I shot over 30 years ago...sitting in the same location. The memories come back to me as clearly as watching a Beta-Max recording of the same era.

Here are a few captures from the first few weeks of January. My Oregon Sports Photos site has a couple pages of January Hoops...stop by and take a look.

Time to Catch Up - Les Schwab Invitational

The holidays were busy, and after the first of the year, things haven't slowed down. So it's time to do some updates. Let's start with the Les Schwab Invitational High School Basketball Tournament held at Liberty High School in Hillsboro, Oregon during the holiday break. It is a great showcase of basketball talent from some of the top high school programs in Oregon mixed with some nationally ranked teams from 5 locations throughout the United States. With a number premier players participating, the tournament draws college recruiters like bees to honey.

Out-of-state teams continued the dominant influence of the tournament as Reserve Christian of Reserve, Louisiana was the seventh team outside of Oregon to win the championship title in the tournament's ten year history. Top local finisher was Lake Oswego High School from Lake Oswego, Oregon featuring junior Kevin Love, who is one of the hottest college prospects in the nation.

For more photos of the 2005 Les Schwab Invitational, visit my Oregon Sports Photos web site.