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June 5, 2012SEYMOUR - Incoming Purdue freshman Ronnie Johnson scored nine points, handed out five assists and collected five rebounds Monday night, as the Indiana All-Stars defeated its junior counterparts 104-97 in the first of two exhibitions between the two squads.
The seniors and juniors face off again Wednesday night at Pendleton Heights, with the junior team including a new set of players, Purdue 2013 commitment Bryson Scott among them.
Monday night, though, Johnson was the lone Boilermaker representative in action, entering a game tied at 15, scoring seven points in a little more than six minutes, then leaving with the seniors up 38-31.
"You ought to see those two battle in practice," Indiana All-Stars coach Craig Teagle of Jay County High School said. "It's unbelievable and it's good for both of them. That's going to be a great rivalry over the next four years.
"Every spot on the court's important, but the point guard has to control the tempo and be the leader and the vocal leader on the floor. Both those guys do a great job with that. You can tell their coaches have done a great job with them. ... But Ronnie's going to have an outstanding career at Purdue. He's a really good player."
The two senior point guards' styles seem to complement one another well.
Ferrell is known as a prolific scorer. Though he's put up big numbers in high school, Johnson's reputation is as more of a table-setter.
"What seems to get forgotten is that Ronnie does shoot the three pretty well," Teagle said. "He's shot it well in practice. He'll continue to add that to his game and become more consistent but he shoots it pretty well.
"They do complement each other well. You almost wonder what it would be like to have both of them out there at the same time. Our problem with that might be in matching up defensively size-wise. But we may get to that situation where we put them out there together and see what happens. It's early and we're still searching for the right combinations."
Johnson made 4-of-8 shots in 19 minutes in Seymour despite playing with a taped-up right hand.
"I think I played all right, but I think I could have played a lot better," Johnson said. "I jammed my finger and had it all taped up. But it was a good experience just to get out and play with everybody and I got a chance to throw some nice alley-oops to people, so that was fun."
The seniors were led by Michigan signee Glenn Robinson's 21 points on 9-of-10 shooting. Michigan State recruit and Mr. Basketball Gary Harris added 19 while IU signees Ron Patterson and Ferrell chipped in 14 and 11, respectively. Evansville recruit D.J. Balentine scored 12.
But the seniors' turnovers - 20 of them, six by Ferrell - helped keep the juniors close, as did 22 offensive rebounds by the younger kids. Michigan commit Zak Irvin led the juniors with 20 points on 8-of-18 shooting.
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