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Alexander rules again in Game Time final

BY ROBBIE LEHMAN | JULY 24, 2009 7:15 AM

If this summer’s Game Time League performance is any preview of what to expect this winter, then the Big Ten better get ready for Kachine Alexander.

The Iowa junior guard did a little bit of everything this summer to earn the league’s Most Valuable Player honors and lead Coralville Hy-Vee’s team to the ninth Game Time championship Thursday night in North Liberty.

The playoffs went the way of the chalk, as No. 1 seed Hy-Vee defeated No. 2 seed Active Endeavors/McCurry’s, 85-68. Hy-Vee had three top-10 picks in the June draft, Nos. 1, 8, and 9. All were Iowa players and all were keys for the team’s championship run.

Alexander scored 19 points, grabbed 11 rebounds, and dished out eight assists. Freshman Morgan Johnson added a double-double of 21 points and 10 rebounds, and junior Kelsey Cermak pitched in four points, four rebounds, and four assists in limited action because of a sprained ankle early in the game.

Cermak’s injury didn’t slow down Hy-Vee much, if at all. The game was close early, but a short run before halftime paired with another one after intermission helped the team gain control. Iowa senior JoAnn Hamlin and freshman Jaime Printy did their best to keep it tight by scoring 22 and 11 points, respectively, for McCurry’s, which only suited up six players. As it was all summer long, Hy-Vee was simply too deep and talented for the six to handle, going up by 20 with seven minutes left and keeping it right around that margin for the remainder of regulation.



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For Alexander, both last summer’s MVP and championship were successfully defended.

“This is my second year in a row, so I’m just trying to keep it going,” she said. “We play really well together, we’re passing a lot, and everybody is hitting her shots and playing really good defense.”
Hy-Vee head coach Mike Stoermer drafted Johnson eighth overall, but said she ended up being much better than he and the rest of the league expected. She was happy to be a champion in her first Game Time experience and thought it will be beneficial for the coming season.

“It’s really exciting; I like it a lot,” she said. “It’s just one of those fun things to be able to look back on whenever I’m a senior or something. It was definitely a good experience. I got to learn how to play with my teammates a lot and how people play. I just grew as a player.”

The loss wasn’t easy for Hamlin to swallow, but she was proud of her team nonetheless.

“Obviously, our team did well — we were in the championship game,” she said. “The score was a little lopsided, but as far as our team, we played well.”

Alexander might have been the easiest pick for MVP in league history — she led the league in four major categories: points per game (24.8), rebounds per game (14.2), assists per game (7.3), and 3-point accuracy (57 percent). She was second in two-point percentage at 63.

The player, whose trademark is wearing long socks to her knees, thought she took her game to another level this summer.

“It was a good tournament overall,” she said. “I think it was well worth the summer; it helped me grow a lot in my game. Coaches expect a lot of me next year, so I had to step up in the summer in order to keep it going.”

Iowa sophomore Kelly Krei of L.L. Pelling Company/Cullen Painting was named Defensive Player of the Year and Brendan Unkrich of Goodfellow Printing/ Imprinted Sportswear was named Coach of the Year before the championship game tipped off.


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