Complaints about pace of play are common when it comes to baseball. But basketball? It takes a very special circumstance.
The Marshall (Minn.) girls basketball team provided such a scenario in Tuesday night’s tournament basketball game at Waseca. In the process Marshall scored less than a handful of points, eventually faltering by a staggering basketball score of 17-4.
Let’s call it the Stall of Fame Game.
Taking advantage of playing in a state with no shot clock in high school hoops, the visitors made it known from the start that they intended to milk the clock as long as they possibly could. As Southernminn.com reports, the visiting Tigers were initially unable to complete any passes, trailing 5-0 midway through the first half.
And that was when Marshall slowed the game to a near halt.
Not only did a true Minnesota kids’ game of “Duck, Duck, Grey Duck” break out among the cheerleaders, but synchronized swaying and chanting kept the crowd in the game.
You can see some of the (in)action here.
What is surprising, the Star Tribune writes, is that Marshall wasn’t some hopeless team. The Tigers finished 18-9, which included earlier losses to Waseca by more “normal” hoops scores of 60-52 and 54-37.
Marshall went with a different approach on this night. Coach Dan Westby explained his thinking to a local radio station afterward.
As for Waseca coach Joan Conway, she and her team were caught off guard, but adjusted accordingly.
“I didn’t expect that,” Conway told Southernminn.com. “I knew it could happen, but there’s never a time that you think a team will hold the ball when they’re down points. We worked on a lot of things this week in preparation for this game and didn’t really have to use any of it.”
Apparently, per the Star Tribune, Tuesday also marked the 26th anniversary of a boys game between North Dakota’s Hettinger and Regent that finished 4-2.
If you’re up to it, here that is.
Naturally, as it likely did in North Dakota over a quarter-century ago, the debate for a shot clock should be firing up in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. A 17-4 outcome leaves you surprised, yet relieved, that more teams don’t resort to the “let’s wait them out” offense.
Surely, those in attendance for Tuesday night’s Stall of Fame Game would agree.