UCLA signee Reeves Nelson out of Modesto just set a playoff record in the NorCal Division Playoffs Wednesday. Nelson is just a junior and has a year of seasoning before he hits the floor for the Bruins. From Richard T. Estrada of the Modesto Bee:After running its first two playoff foes out of the gym, the Crusaders ran into a team willing to play their urban-style game -- both the balling and bravado.
"We knew they'd come out and run with us and shoot 3s, and we were excited," Nelson said. "It's the playoffs now and everything is getting a little more intense."
No one could match Nelson's intensity, as he scored a playoff-record 53 points to lead MC past Encina 122-100 in a Sac-Joaquin Section semifinal at Tokay High.
53 points in a high school game! Not only did he score, but the Bee also reports that he showed some real competitive fire:
Reeves put his personal stamp on this game in the third period.
With MC up by 20 points, Nelson broke from the pack and went up to slam. Knaules, though, rose up and tipped the ball from behind.
Moments later, Nelson was in the open again. Knaules didn't try for a block this time, instead slamming his body into Nelson as he was up in the air.
He crashed to the ground with a thud -- but bounced up just as quickly and thumped his chest against Knaules in a bit of bravado common for the playground.
It earned Nelson a technical, but it also earned him respect -- and showed the fiery side of a player whose playful personality has been misconstrued as lethargic.
"It should have been an intentional foul, the way he went into Reeves," said coach Gary Porter, whose UCLA-committed star scored 30 in the first half to help MC to a 60-40 halftime lead. "It was an emotional moment and he got right into the guy. I understood why he got a technical.
"He has emotion, it's just that he isn't the type of player who goes out to do that every time."While Nelson kept the crowd entertained with his dunks, 3-pointers and open-court dribbling, guard D.J. Seeley celebrated a homecoming of sorts.
Wow, let's hope he keeps on getting better in the next year and saves some of that for the college game.