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Archive for Tuesday, July 31, 2007

KU hoops prospects square off in semis

July 31, 2007

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Kansas University men's basketball recruit Travis Releford didn't have a spectacular performance in a semifinal game of the Kansas City Price Chopper Invitational on Monday in Okun Fieldhouse.

However, his 12 points still were enough to help Kansas City Pump N Run escape with a 52-51 victory over Urban DFW.

"Coach (L.J. Goolsby) called a timeout late and said, 'This is it. This is the last tournament we're playing in together. If you all want it, then step up and do what it takes to win,'" said Releford, whose team took its first second-half lead with just three minutes to play. "So we came out and had some good defensive stops and got the win."

Releford wasn't the only player KU assistant coach Kurtis Townsend and director of basketball operations Ronnie Chalmers were out to watch in that semifinal.

Releford's teammate Marcus Denmon and DFW's J'Mison Morgan are a pair of KU prospects who got a chance to show their stuff.

Denmon scored just five points, but had a block and a steal that sparked the K.C. team's late run.

That's exactly how Denmon has been in recruiting: quiet early, then springing up to surprise people.

"I just think a lot of people have finally gotten the chance to see him," Goolsby said. "He's really been kind of the hidden gem, in some regards, because he hasn't been out on the circuit as much. But now that he's gotten out there more coaches have seen him, they really like what he's able to do."

Unfortunately for Morgan, who was a high school and AAU teammate of KU's Darrell Arthur, he didn't see much playing time in the second half due to foul trouble.

He finished with six rebounds and two blocks in his short time on the court. His final rebound could have won the game for DFW, but his put-back attempt at the buzzer rimmed out.

Morgan will face another KU prospect, St. Louis Eagles' Scott Suggs, in the third-place game today. The Eagles fell to the Illinois Warriors, 64-51. Suggs scored 13 points in the loss Monday.

Pump N Run will go up against the Warriors in the championship game at 11 a.m. today.

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Czyz a hot commodity: Kansas prospect Olek Czyz did pretty much all he could in his final game with the Las Vegas Prospects.

The No. 85 overall player in the class of 2008 and 24th-ranked power forward by rivals.com scored 19 points in a 70-61 loss to Georgia Elite.

Czyz, a native of Poland, has received offers from Kansas, Duke, Florida, Arizona State, Kentucky and Louisville.

He already has made unofficial visits to Louisville and Kentucky and participated in a camp at Kentucky. He also participated in a camp at Arizone State.

"I've gotten offers from a lot of great programs," Czyz said. "That's what my goal was for this summer. I've accomplished it and have collected offers from big schools.

"I'll pick my top schools right after I get back to Reno. On Aug. 1, I'll mention it, officially, who the schools are. So those will be the schools that I visit."

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