June 30, 2006

Budinger and Withey take the court at Skill Camp

The 2006 Lute Olson Advanced Skill & Development Camp's second day began with a practice session and then campers going to lunch at the Student Union before taking a tour of the University of Arizona's Integrated Learning Center and Library.

The day started off with stretching, where the kids did easy running, change of direction, change of pace, and half-court backpedal sprints. That lasted roughly 15 minutes before the players did 10 minutes of ball-handling drills.

At first the campers dribbled the ball by themselves, preceding a drill where they came down court being defended. Chase Budinger went against Jamelle Horne here, while Zane Johnson and Luke Babbitt defended each other, along with Alex Jacobson and Andy Poling.

A new camper debuted Friday morning named Uros Lukovic, who is the son of Phoenix Suns scout Ljubisa Lukovic. He was one of the three new campers along with Budinger and Jeff Withey. In the ball handling drills, Lukovic showed nice mobility for someone who is about 6-foot-10.

Next were post/perimeter breakdown drills, where the campers worked on going through screens, among other techniques without the ball. After that were some 3-on-2 and 2-on-1 drills, which only lasted about five minutes.

Then the players got in groups of five and did drills running down the court, passing the ball before feeding it into the paint. Withey looked particularly good here because of his size and athleticism.

After this, the campers broke up into teams and for about 50 minutes, playing games to seven. The winner would stay on the court and the losing team rotated to the court to the elft.

The best team here was made up of Budinger, Withey, Johnson, Babbitt and Kamyron Brown. They competed a lot with a team of Jacobson, Horne, Laval Lucas-Perry, Jeremy Tyler and Nic Wise.

The matchup of the day was Budinger against Horne. The two squared off in just about everything they did and Horne definitely held his own against Budinger. However, on offense, Budinger scored at will and was doing a great job taking the ball to the basket and hitting his three-pointer, which he gets off so easily.

Tyler had another great day, finishing everything down low. At first it looked like he wouldn't have much competition for best big man at camp but based on how Withey looked this morning, it's going to be a fun battle to watch between those two.

Babbitt's fundamentals looked as good as usual, but his shot still isn't going down. He did play better than Thursday night, however, and had some great passes in transition. The UA coaches were very complimentary of his game. Poling hit a few midrange jumpers and showed some nice touch in the post.

Jacobson had a good morning as well. He was tired Thursday night after a tough workout along with Brown and Johnson but seems more energetic. Last year, he spent most of the time battling Withey but this year he'll get to go against Jordan Hill, Poling and Tyler as well, giving him plenty of competition.

Hill couldn't make it in the morning due to class, but notable names in the gym included Ivan Radenovic, a slimmed-down Jawann McClellan, Fendi Onobun and Damon Stoudamire.

* GOAZCATS.com will continue its extensive coverage of the 2006 Lute Olson Advanced Skill & Development Camp this evening.

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