As the saying goes: If you can shoot, there is a place in the game for you.
Jake Allsmiller can shoot. The 6-foot-5, 170-pound Christ Presbyterian Academy stringbean rained down eight 3-pointers and 26 points – both season highs – in an 83-41 District 10-AA romp over David Lipscomb Academy last Friday before a standing room only crowd in the CPA gym.
On team like CPA (14-2, 5-0), which has multiple offensive options, Allsmiller knows he has plenty of chances to play like he did Friday.
Once CPA rebounds, he simply runs off a pick, runs to a spot behind the 3-point line, then waits for pass from a teammate, either right away or late in the possession. When he gets the ball he fires away.
“It all comes from my teammates and the offense we run,” he said. “My teammates set good picks to get me open, and all the credit goes to them.”
When he gets in a groove it almost seems like Allsmiller is shooting layups rather than long-range jumpers. He said he has made as many as 10 3-pointers in a game, last summer during a team camp at Belmont.
Allsmiller knew Friday was his night when one of the 3-pointers he launched from the corner nicked the side of the backboard but still went in.
“I didn’t even know that until I was running back down the court and one of my teammates told me,” he said. “It has to be your night when those kind of shots go in.”
Although he’s just the team’s fourth leading scorer at 11.1 points per game, he is one of the Lions’ most valuable weapons.
“When teams make a commitment to stop our inside game, that’s when Jake is so valuable to us,” coach Drew Maddux said. “We have a very up-tempo offense where we can score points in bunches, and his shooting makes it so much easier for our other guys to get their points.”
Allsmiller hit 119 3-pointers his freshman year, then broke his own school record with 129 last year. He has 36 so far this season for a two and a half-year total of 284.
“He sure didn’t get it from me,” his father, 6-foot-8 Brian Allsmiller, an assistant coach at CPA, said, laughing.
Brian Allsmiller was a burly post player who would mix it up inside as a leading rebounder for Vanderbilt, where he was a three-year letterman (1979-81). By his own admission, he was not an offensive juggernaut.
Jake already has college offers from Vanderbilt and Miami, Ohio.
Allsmiller is one of nine juniors on the CPA roster, which has no seniors. There also are two sophomores and one freshman.
They do, however have the experience of last year’s Class AA state championship. And they have Jalen Lindsey, who received a scholarship offer from Louisville last Wednesday. That brought his current total to 17 Division I requests for his services.
MaxPreps ranked CPA No. 20 in the nation late last month. A 1-2 record at the Beach Ball Classic in Myrtle Beach, S.C., just after Christmas, could cause a drop.
“They are plenty good,” Lipscomb Academy coach Richie Pickens said. “They are very hard to guard because of all the weapons they have and they are very well coached.”
Pickens refused to be drawn into a comparison of which team was better, last year’s CPA state title team or this one.
“Just say they are both very good,” he said.
• CPA girls bounce back: CPA’s girls (10-4) returned from two losses at last week’s Hickman County Invitational with their best defensive game of the season in a 36-13 win over Lipscomb Academy.
Lipscomb had just seven points after three quarters and finished with one of the lowest point totals in recent team history. The Mustangs hit just two of 26 shots (7.7 percent) in a five-point first half.
“We’ve still got some things to work on, but we’re definitely getting better,” CPA coach Becky LeGate said. “Defensively, we were very good. Our defense will dictate how far we go this season.
“We played some really good teams in the Christmas tournament, we lost to an outstanding Jackson County team and we lost in double overtime to Harding Academy.”
Faith LeGate scored 14 points, more than the entire Lipscomb team.
CPA will host Maplewood in a 10-AA twin bill Tuesday.
• 1,000-point club: CPA’s Lauren Thompson was honored between games for scoring her 1,000th point recently for the Lions. The Belmont signee was last year’s state tournament MVP.
Also Friday, Nashville Christian School’s Bailey Maddox scored 19 points as she hurdled the1,000-point barrier in a 56-38 district win over White House-Heritage.