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December 2, 2013
Indians Upset Warriors in Finals
Keller 45 Arlington Martin 44
Arlington Martin started the season with a signature win at Plano West. The big road win displayed they could play with anyone in the state. The Keller Indians stepped up and showed they have the balance and team to play with the top teams in Texas as they rolled into Martin and upset the Warriors, 45-44, in the championship game of the Thanksgiving Classic.
Keller looked to be in trouble early as Martin's pressure defense and athleticism had the Indians rattled early as the Warrior's took an early 16-4 lead. Keller found its rhythm by feeding powerful sophomore post man Nolan Taylor on the low block. Sharp-shooting wing/guard Kyle Tanner found his footing shortly after and righted his 0-for-4 shooting start with 6 quick points. Keller trimmed the 12-point deficit to 4 at the half at 25-21.
Martin held the lead through the 3rd and 4th quarters behind their balanced attack lead by Nick Babb's 12 point performance. Trailing by 1 with under 30 seconds, Keller jumped into a half-court trap as freshman point guard RJ Nembhard deflected a pass to Tanner. Martin chased down Tanner and fouled him with 20 seconds remaining and the calm senior knocked down both free throws to take home the trophy and one-point win.
Players to Watch:
Kyle Tanner: 6-2, 2014 The sleeper senior has a solid game with a smooth jumper. He elevates very well on his shot and has a picture perfect release from the arc. He can create his jumper off the dribble, has good bounce at the rim and has a good feel for the game.
6-12 FG (2-4 from 3), 18 points
Nolan Taylor: 6-5, 2016 The powerful paint player has a great feel at the rim and knows how to use his body to create space. He has a soft touch with crafty moves on the block and moves bodies to hold his space. He rebounds by using his body and moves well for his size.
8-12 FG, 7 rebounds, 16 points
RJ Nembhard: 6-1, 2017 The young point guard is finding his way on the court and shows flashes of his talent. As he understands the speed of the game at the varsity level, he will start to make a bigger impact. He has a long and rangy frame, can get by his man and has the ability to be a very good defender on the ball.