Holloman's 'threes' lift Constitution in Philly Public League semifinals

Shaire Tolson-Ford (left) and Amonie 'Moonie' Holloman (second fromm right) lead Constitution High's celebration after Public League semifinal victory over Bartram.
Shaire Tolson-Ford (left) and Amonie 'Moonie' Holloman (second fromm right) lead Constitution High's celebration after Public League semifinal victory over Bartram. (DAVID MAIALETTI / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER)
Posted: February 22, 2012

FRED WHARTON might be the smartest nickname-giver in the history of parenthood.

. . . Not that he knew what he was doing.

Eighteen years ago, Wharton decided to call his newborn son "Moonie" because he had no hair and the noggin was shinin,' well, like that big thing up in the sky that appears each night.

By now, Wharton could be telling people, "I named him that because I knew he'd be shooting all these moonballs."

If you'd like to say hello to Amonie Holloman, a 5-7, 145-pound senior guard for Constitution High's basketball team, you'd better venture beyond the arc. That's pretty much the only place you'll ever see him.

"Look at me," Holloman said, smiling. "I'm pretty small and I've always been this way. Since I started playing ball, I've always been a deep shooter. It wouldn't make much sense for me to take the ball down low with the trees."

Last night, in the second game of a Public League semifinal doubleheader at Southern High, Holloman, the sixth man, scored 15 points as Constitution put a 76-55 hurtin' on John Bartram.

Thus, at approximately 5:45 Saturday at the Community College of Philadelphia, we'll see a final - ConHigh vs. Boys' Latin Charter - featuring schools with only 7 combined seasons of Pub experience. BL leads in that department, 4-3.

With the beginning of this story in mind, you get one chance to guess how Holloman scored his points. Correct. Exclusively via three-pointers. He sniped 5-for-9 from downtown and - oh, my goodness! - actually took one shot from closer than 19 feet, 9 inches. Didn't hit it, of course.

When Holloman was asked how many non-threes he has attempted this season, he blurted out, "Not many. Maybe 10."

Soon, when asked to estimate how many consecutive treys he can make during practice hot streaks, he yelled down the hallway to some teammates.

Seven was the lowest number they bellowed back his way. Twelve was the highest.

"The guys always say they're going to challenge me to a shooting contest in practice," he said. "It never happens."

Amonie (uh-mahn-ee), who lives near 11th and Parrish, said he puts in hour upon hour of jump-shooting practice and, usually, it shows.

"I wouldn't say I'm streaky," he noted. "But if I do hit a couple, I usually keep hitting them."

Holloman drained two of his treys in an 18-15 first quarter, then was quiet through the second. His three threes thereafter were timely. Two were posted in a 7-2 run that enabled the Generals to create space after Bartram crawled within 40-38 on two baskets by guard Gary Gordon.

And in the fourth quarter, he pretty much wielded the dagger. With Bartram still very much alive at 55-51, Holloman took a pass in the right corner from Tamir Bolger and, bang, lifted the lead to seven points.

"I know what my role is," he said. "Get to open spots then hit the shots, when they're available. My teammates were finding me."

Savon Goodman, the high-flying former Villanova commit who's back on the market, totaled 27 points and 11 rebounds. Daiquan Walker, another D-I prospect, added nine assists and seven rebounds to 15 points. Fajion Jones claimed 10 boards.

For Bartram, which helped to create the large final margin by fouling and fouling down the stretch, Gary Gordon (20 points), Malik Noel (13) and Jared Bryant (10) hit two treys apiece while Terrieck Williams notched 10 rebounds.

Holloman, by the way, loved the timing of his successful moonballs.

"Any time they started gaining momentum, I just wanted to shut it down completely," he said. "I wanted to put an end to them.'

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