Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Talk About The Passion-Part I

An ongoing (and highly subjective) series highlighting the ten greatest moments in Cincinnati Sports History.

10. I defeat Kevin Frey's team in a pickup basketball game (1999-ish).

The Key Players:

Kevin Frey was a 6' 8" starting forward for the Xavier University Men's Basketball Team from 1998-2001. A highly touted recruit who was considered, at best, an underachiever for the Musketeers, Frey was best know for his role in Xavier's defeat of the then-number 1 ranked UC Bearcats in 1999. Frey scored four points, including a break-away layup with 29 seconds left, in the last minute of the game, ensuring the upset. After his college career ended, Frey has gone on to play professionally in Europe, as well as in the USBL and CBA.

Chris Knight was the captain of the Northwestern University Purple League Intramural Basketball semi-finalist squad, The Bubonic Plague, in 1999 and 2000. At 6'3", 180 lbs., Knight was an undersized center for the Plague, known for his tenacious rebounding, poor FG percentage, and commitment to "Puerto Rican Defense". He was, and remains, an avid smoker.

The event:

Both Frey and Knight were regulars at the famed "High Noon" pick-up games at The O'Connor Sports Center on the campus at Xavier University in the summer of 1999. The games usually consisted of a handful of middle-aged professors, a few current Xavier students, former and present Xavier basketball players, and occasionally, members of the O'Conner Sports Center custodial crew. This particular showdown found Frey and Knight matched up at the point-center position, with Knight at a serious size and skill disadvantage. Frey's strategy, luckily for Knight, seemed to be focused on his perimeter play, as his team's offense relied heavily on him receiving the ball at the top of the key on every single possession, then firing up 20 foot jump shots. Knight's squad used a motion offense peppered with moving picks and bank shots to keep the game close. With the score knotted at 9-9 (first to 11 by ones wins), Frey broke free on a fast break and dunked over Knight to make the score 10-9. Undeterred, Knight's team answered on the next possession to tie the game at 10-10, setting the stage for the Tenth Greatest Moment in The History of Cincinnati Sports. As Frey's teammate, the infamous "Jon the Duck" brought the ball up the court, Chris Knight's superior basketball IQ took the game over. Realizing that The Duck would attempt to pass the ball to Kevin Frey at the top of the key (as he had in every single possession previous), Knight stepped into the passing lane and knocked the ball into the backcourt. With Frey hot on his heels, Knight streaked towards the right side of the hoop at full speed where he executed this move:

Chris Knight 1.
Kevin Frey 0.
The Cincinnati Sports Scene was forever changed.

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