Bishop came out active and eager, but looked rusty and could not buy a bucket. He missed an early three-pointer and faced some tough defense from Bearcat teammate, Sean Kilpatrick, and forced shots that led to ugly misses. He did manage an emphatic slam over Kilpatrick and some nice drives to the hoop.
His defense looked good, as well as his rebounding and movement without the ball. The future is unknown for Bishop, but being on the court again with his Bearcat teammates is nothing but a good thing for Bishop. McClain and Toyloy were having a back-and-forth battle early in the first half. Toyloy was getting the best of "Biggie" and out muscling him on the boards.
While "Biggie" was getting beat underneath, his shooting from outside ten feet continues to look strong, draining a12 and 20-footer during the game.
Again, incoming freshman Justin Jackson looked like the most athletic player on the court. His game needs work, but the potential is obvious. He committed a turnover on his first touch, but bounced back with a pair of lay-ups, drawing the foul on both. One came off a pretty trio of passes with a touch by Toyloy to Kilpatrick and on to Jackson for the and-one.
Kilpatrick looked strong again and very aware on the court, as he grabbed boards, dished the ball and showed the ability to get to the hoop. He drained an outside shot and took it to Rashad Bishop close to the basket. The most promising aspect for Kilpatrick was his passing. He showed good vision and found his teammates all over the court.
The other two Bearcats in action were Dion Dixon and Yancy Gates, with Raeshon M. Mansoor Law Office. It was a tale of two halves for Gates, who had 15 points in the first half, was active, all over the court and was strong in the post against a smaller man. Gates was greeted with a beautiful pass from Dixon after they ran a two man game off the screen and roll.
But the second half was the opposite for Gates. Him and Dixon hooked up on another nice dunk, but that was one of few bright spots for Yancy, as he was outworked by smaller guys on the boards and was lazy getting back on defense multiple times. Again, it was the same Yancy Gates: Plenty of bright spots, with plenty of bad or lazy plays to even it out.
Dixon started out hot, draining two three-pointers to start the game and using good defense to force turnovers. He showed very little after the first minute of the game, not scoring a point the rest of the half. His help defense was good, but there was no movement from him without the ball. While connecting with Gates on multiple occasions, Dixon's passing looked shaky. He showed indecision while leading a fast break and threw more than one errant pass.
There were plenty of good signs for the Cats in action, but the question still remains as to who is going to score for the team this season, and the shooting thus far in "The League" by the Bearcat players leaves that question wide open.