Tag:Patric Young
Posted on: July 5, 2011 11:53 am

US U-19 team hangs on, earns No. 1 seed in Latvia

By Jeff Goodman

Lithuania blasted the US U-19 team by 33 points exactly one week earlier.

Sure, it was only an exhibition game.

But still.

This time, in a game that counted, Jeremy Lamb was dominant from a scoring standpoint, Joe Jackson was running the show – and Doug McDermott was his usual solid self.

The United States led by nine after three quarters and was up eight with less than a minute left in regulation.

But the Americans couldn’t close it out – and moments later, were down a half-dozen in overtime. However, Lamb, who finished with 35 points, hit a huge turnaround with 1.8 seconds left that gave the U.S. a 107-105 victory.

``We showed a lot of resiliency,” US coach Paul Hewitt told CBSSports.com from Latvia. ``Our guys didn’t freelance, they executed and we got the ball inside.”

Hewitt was pleased, in particular, with the mental toughness displayed by Florida big man Patric Young – who missed a pair of free throws that could have won the game in regulation.

``I really think this will help him in his career,” Hewitt said. ``He came back and made all of his free throws in overtime and had a couple of big dunks.”

Hewitt’s team will play Croatia tomorrow, but regardless of the outcome, they will advance to the medal round as the top overall seed.

The quarterfinals begin Friday and the gold medal game is set for Sunday, July 10.

No US team has ever won the U-19 championships on European soil.

``Jeremy Lamb was unbelievable today,” Hewitt said. ``He made a conscious effort to use screens. I think Jeremy’s one of those guys where the biggest the moment, the more he prepares. He was focused and all business today.”

- Hewitt is now sold on Lithuanian big man Jonas Valanciunas, who finished with 30 points and 15 boards in the loss. Valanciunas was chosen fifth overall by the Toronto Raptors. ``He’s the real deal. I love his competitiveness. After the game, he was so upset he was crying and punching walls. He went Rambo on us in the second half.”

- Hewitt was even more complimentary of Croatian 17-year-old forward Dario Saric, who he compared to a young Dirk Nowitzki. ``He’s the closest thing I’ve seen to a young Dirk. Ever,” Hewitt said. ``He’s 6-foot-10 and is unbelievable. I’ve never seen a big guy make some of the passes he does.”

- Lithuania was without its starting point guard, Vytenis Cizauskas, who sat out with an ankle injury. 

Posted on: June 24, 2011 10:22 am

Patric Young holds key to Gators' season

By Jeff Borzello

After coming within three points of the Final Four last season, Florida has the pieces to make another run this campaign.

The Gators return starters Erving Walker and Kenny Boynton, two scoring guards that can get hot at any time. Rutgers transfer Mike Rosario, who averaged 16.7 points in the Big East, is now eligible. Moreover, top-five recruit Brad Beal will enter the fold on the perimeter as well.

According to David Jones of Florida Today, none of those four holds the key to whether Florida makes another deep run in the NCAA tournament.

That would be Patric Young, a 6-foot-9 big man who averaged 3.4 points and 3.8 rebounds during his freshman season in Gainesville.

“With so much talent around him, Young could very well be the most important player in the nation,” Jones wrote.

Now, I wouldn’t go ahead and say that Young is the single most important player in the country, but his production will likely determine how good the Gators are next season.

Coming out of high school, I overrated Young. It seemed his strength and aggression at both ends would translate well to the college level. Instead, Young’s weak back-to-the-basket game and overall lack of offensive skill hindered his development. He was still a solid defender and rebounder, but Florida needs more from him this year.

Young showed flashes of his potential last season, going for 12 points and five rebounds in only 19 minutes against South Carolina; going for nine points and five boards on the road at Vanderbilt; and coming up big against UCLA in the NCAA tournament, with eight points and four boards in only 16 minutes.

“If he’s able to be a double-digit scorer and major force as a rebounder, Florida could have a huge season,” Jones wrote.

Simply putting up gaudy numbers won’t cut it, though. Alex Tyus and Vernon Macklin all had solid scoring and rebounding production last season, but Florida’s frontcourt always had the label of being inconsistent and soft. Young needs to change that immediately.

He has the body and the work ethic to get that done. Most big men don’t have the non-stop motor that Young has, especially on the defensive end of the floor and the glass. He’s physical with opponents, and his athleticism gives him an edge over lunch-pail players who only do the dirty work.

While Florida’s perimeter players will get most of the attention next season – head coach Billy Donovan can conceivably start four guards and have them average a combined 60-65 points per game – it won’t be the guards that determine that fate of the 2011-12 Gators.

If Florida reaches New Orleans next March, there is little doubt most of the credit will have to go to Young.

Photo: US Presswire

Category: NCAAB
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