Boone high school's boys basketball team pulled off a shocking upset on Thursday night in Orlando, Fla., defeating the defending state champion Oak Ridge Pioneers, a team that was beating its opponents by an average of 30.1 points this season. But what should have been a celebration for the now 8-6 Boone Braves has instead turned into a heated debate on Twitter over the strategy Boone employed defeat Oak Ridge.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, Boone used what's called the "stall offense," opting to hold the ball as long as possible during their offensive possession rather than try to score. This is a tactic that has been used by many teams at the high school level around the country, because, unlike both college and the NBA, they play without a shot clock. The Braves used this to their advantage on Thursday night, sitting on the ball throughout the first half and heading into the locker room down by an odd score of 3-0.
Compared the the first half, the second half was an offensive explosion, with the Braves eventually coming out on top 20-16 thanks to hitting 11 of 14 free throws all in the game's final quarter. Afterwards, a reporter at the game caught up with Boone's head coach Dave Martinson to discuss the strategy and the victory. Martinson was pleased with what he saw:
Boone is hardly the first high school team to use this offense and win a low-scoring affair with it. In 2016, a Wisconsin high school boys team won a game 14-11 doing it. But thanks to social media, Boone's win made the rounds on Twitter, and people are NOT happy. That includes two-time NBA champion David West:
Here's some footage from the game, which shows just how lame it is:
But, as some argued on Twitter, it is within the rules and if it helps Boone win the game, more power to them. I personally would not want to watch, play in or be a part of it in any way, but that is completely irrelevant. If stall ball is how you want to win, then go ahead and stall ball your face off.