Team USA advances to the U17 semifinals with a win over China

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Team USA advanced to the quarterfinals of the U17 World Championships in Dubai on Thursday morning with a 113-71 win over China.

Henry Ellenson led the way with 21 points and 10 boards for the American, while Diamond Stone chipped in with 17 points and eight boards and Malik Newman added 16 points and five assists.

The US will advance to play Serbia in the semifinals on Friday. Serbia beat Canada on Thursday, 71-64, to advance. That game will be broadcast in the States at 10:30 a.m. ET.

The US is going to have an advantage in the front court in every game that they play in this event. Guys like Stone, Ellenson, Harry Giles, Calib Swanigan and Ivan Rabb are just too big and too athletic for these other countries to handle, especially when you consider that the US goes five deep up front. But what was promising in this game, especially when considering his long-term potential as a point guard, was Newman’s play at the point guard spot. He scored, but he didn’t limit himself, creating off the dribble and doing things like passing ahead in transition.

The other semifinal will be played between Australia and the winner of tonight’s Spain-France game.

Here is Thursday’s box score:


Henry Ellenson wins Marquette Madness dunk contest

Steve Wojciechowski
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Marquette freshman forward Henry Ellenson won the Marquette Madness slam dunk contest on Friday night with a between the legs dunk.

The 6-foot-10 Ellenson, the top recruit in Steve Wojciechowski’s freshmen class, defeated sophomore Sandy Cohen, fellow freshman Sacar Anim and Wally Ellenson, his older brother.

Ellenson joins the Golden Eagles as the No. 11 overall recruit in the Class of 2015.

Bill Self signs $10,000 check for KU student


Late Night in the Phog is typically a night to remember for Kansas fans. For Kansas student Jerrod Martin Castro, Friday night’s event is one he won’t forget.

Castro, a sophomore, was selected as a contestant for a $10,000 giveaway. The only thing standing in the way of a big payday was a half-court shot. Brennan Bechard, the Kansas director of basketball operations, attempted the long-distance shot and hit nothing but net.

Kansas head coach Bill Self signed a $10,000 check on the spot.