Hoop team with Valley players is 10th in nation
July 25, 2012
By Sebastian Moraga
NOTE: This story has been corrected since its original posting.
No time for rest when your name is Kallin Spiller.
After finishing 10th at the AAU basketball nationals in West Chester, Ohio, July 18, the middle-schooler from the Snoqualmie Valley returned home with her team and left July 21 for another hoop adventure, this time an NBC basketball camp. She finished that camp July 26 and went straight to Vegas … for another tournament, with another team.
Needless to say, she wasn’t available for comment.
In Ohio, her team Swish Black got slotted in pool play with the eventual national champions from Tennessee, the Stallings.
First, they played and beat the Kentucky Diamonds by 18 points. On that same day, they played the Stallings. The Swish Black led for most of the game, but lost.
“Brutal to lead the whole way and then blow it at the end,” Gina Spiller, Kallin’s mom, wrote in an email. “It didn’t help that the hometown refs called 19 fouls against us and four against them for that whole game.”
To make the task even harder, most of the Swish Black’s games, including their first one, happened early in the morning, Eastern time.
“All our West Coast girls had a tough time getting to sleep,” Gina wrote. The team included players from Kirkland, Seattle, Issaquah, Richland, Shoreline, Kenmore and Oregon City, Ore., besides Kallin and Snoqualmie’s Jill Chellis, who did not play due to injury.
Having lost to Tennessee, they defeated the Fairfax Stars from Virginia by 42 points to finish second in their pool. In the championship bracket, they beat the Wisconsin Force Elite by 23 points before losing to the Missouri Valley Magic by three, dropping to the consolation bracket.
In that bracket, the team played like its collective heads were on fire, winning four consecutive games against teams from Wisconsin, Boston, Kentucky and Indiana by an average of 20 points, good enough to earn 10th place.
She may have been tired when she returned from Lakota West High School in Ohio, but the flipside of the sore muscles was the memory of a performance that saw her score in every game but one she played in the Buckeye State.
“She had 14 against Boston and I think 12 against Wisconsin and nine against Indiana,” Gina wrote of her daughter. “She also contributed with rebounds and assists in every game.”
Sebastian Moraga: 392-6434, ext. 221, or email@example.com. Comment at www.snovalleystar.com.