Pittsburgh Pro - Am 6/18 Derrick Colter dominates in debut.

By Steve DiMiceli

If the 2012-2013 Dukes are looking for answers at point guard, the question may have changed from "Is there a " to "Who is the" top option at the one. Both Derrick Colter and Marvin Binney turned in exceptional debuts this evening in Greentree at the PBC Pro-Am to give Duquesne some hope to fill the void created by the departure of TJ McConnell and Mike Talley. 

Keep in mind all statistics are unofficial. I will provide official statistics in an additional post. 

Game 2 of the evening featured Dukes Martins Abele and Derrick Colter for GNC against South Hills Audi composed entirely of professionals including Pitt's Chevy Trotman, currently playing in professionally in Munich along with big man Kyle Goldcamp of Gannon and the D-League. Abele matched up well against the more athletic and experienced Goldcamp and altered a number of his shots. While Abele did not seem any smoother or quicker physically, he seemed more mentally aware. He was in better position defensively and offensively and he didn't try to do too much. I only noticed two fouls called against him the entire game. His hands did look a little stronger both on the glass and when receiving the ball. He put the ball on the floor on several occasions and created two shots with a pass to teammates. He closed with 8 points including the game winning basket in over time. 

The story of Game Two was Derrick Colter and his 29 points (Editing Note: The official stats have Colter with 29 not the 31 I originally reported). He was the best player on the court over his teammate and a star of last year's summer league, Kendrick Perry from YSU. He opened the scoring with a three pointer and drew a foul on his next shot. After struggling for a stretch he closed with 9 points in the first half. In the second, he came alive after a nifty backboard alley oop to a teammate who stuffed it home. Colter shot the ball a lot but he shared it quite a bit too. By my count he created 10 shots for teammates with 6 resulting in assists. He scored 6 unassisted baskets himself and create very well for himself off the dribble. Colter was raw in some ways and made some ill advised passes.  He gave his team 5 quick points in overtime to lead to a win and didn't seem to mind having the ball in his hand at key times. For his first game against not just college opponents but professional or graduated players I came away very impressed. I will hold back from making wild comparisons, but he has me very optimistic.

One of the more interesting things about Colter tonight was that he talked the refs into calling a lane violation that set up an improbable foul on Perry from three which he ultimately made to tie the game. I noticed Colter chatting the ref as Audi set up for the a one and one that seemed likely to seal the victory. I thought he looked jovial and was just laughing off the end of the game with the zebra, but sure enough the ref called a lane violation and the ball went the other way. 

Jerry Jones was unable to play due to class commitment. 

Game 3 featured UPMC with Sean Johnson, Andre Marhold and Quevyn Winters against Oliverios Peppers  featuring Jeremiah Jones, Marvin Binney, and much to my surprise Ovie Soko. Keep in mind that this was a very difficult game for me to track because I didn't recognize a number of the players. Also note that both teams went 10 a side so the players only played about half the time for the most part. The first half began with the  bigger UPMC dominating. As I suspected Marhold and Pitt's sophomore big man Malcolm Gilbert combined to form a strong tandem underneath. Marhold and Johnson both looked strong defensively with Johnson breaking up a few seemingly easy fast break opportunities. Marhold seemed his normal self but was more comfortable taking the jump shot. He was 2 for 2 from the line and added a nice dunk. He missed some very easy shots that he should have finished stronger. Johnson looked much more comfortable in the summer league than last year. He closed with 6 points that I noticed while creating 3 shots for teammates. He played a good overall game, but did not shoot well. 

Quevyn Winters chipped in 13 points (Editing Note: I originally reported he finished w/ 6. Like I said the 3rd game was very difficult to follow) but was hard done not to finish with more. He had at least four shots just fall off on him including a couple of threes. Overall his shot looks very strong and he lives up to his billing as a complete offensive package. He demonstrated excellent ball handling skills and good vision for a player his size. He played with a very high motor and was all over the court. Winters found his way into position for rebounds and didn't need to box out.  I've heard him compared to Bill Clark and on first viewing, I disagree with that. He seemed more in control than Clark early in his career and in a lot of ways was more polished.  However, Clark's jumper was more advanced from day one. Overall, he'll be one to watch. 

In the first half I was wondering where Ovie Soko's signature explosiveness was. Apparently, he and the rest of the Peppers were saving it for the second half. Soko opened his score sheet with a monster fast break dunk over Sean Johnson and never looked back. He was a sturdy rebounder with strong hands. When he was in position for the rebound, there was little doubt that he was going to get it, finishing with 6 boards to go with his 7 points. He had a tough time breaking down Marhold and Gilbert in the first but powered through them in the second. Physically, Soko is a monster though it's more girth than height. He's about the same height as Marhold and probably not the 6'8'' he's listed.

Jeremiah Jones was one who I had a difficult time tracking tonight. He can create off the dribble and bunched together 7 points in the second half on a 3, a dunk and an unassisted lay up. Jones was very acrobatic and seemed to have body control that would rival any returning Duke. He was not afraid to shoot the ball.

Marvin Binney also put in a strong showing finishing with 11 points. He may have been Peppers best player in the first half but settled for more of a support role in the second. He shared the ball well setting up 4 shots. What impressed me most about Binney was how he always found himself in the right place for loose balls and rebounds. He played mostly on the second unit for Peppers but he earned minutes at the end of the game to help them seal the comeback victory.

Nice to see a couple of posters tonight like KenOTR and mm76or99. Also great to meet Jenn Menendez from the PG and Director of Basketball Operations Danny Lawson. Overall great night at Greentree.