press defense (1945)

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at RCI.RUTGERS.EDU
Thu Jan 20 12:22:22 UTC 2005

OED2 has 1961 for the basketball sense of "press" and 1976 for "full-court

* press defense

[1943 _Chicago Tribune_ 2 Jan. 14/4 There was little use for their
pressing defense in the last quarter as the Trout-coached quintet opened
up offensively to make a rout out of what had previously been a tightly
contested game.]

[1943 _Hammond Times_ (Indiana) 15 Mar. 9/1 Rochester, for some strange
reason, came to Hammond unprepared to operate against a pressing defense.
Although Lebanon has been "picking 'em up" all over the court through an
entire season, the favored Rochester five acted as though it had never
seen such tactics.]

1945 _Daily Register_ (Harrisburg, Ill.) 26 Feb. 5/4 They have been told
of the "press defense" used by Champaign and they were given an education
in the "block and fade" of the Taylorville Tornadoes last year.

1945 _Dixon Evening Telegraph_ (Ill.) 19 Mar. 5/3 Minus one key player,
Champaign fought gamely in the championship tilt Saturday night at
Champaign, but even its famous press defense couldn't stop Decatur's
drive-in shots and rebounding monopoly.

* full-court press

[1947 _Post-Standard_ (Syracuse, NY) 16 Jan. 14/7 Niland cut the margin to
one with another foul conversion and Canisius went into a full-court
pressing defense.]

[1948 _Iowa City Press Citizen_ 1 Mar. 12/2 Further Iowa hope centers on
its full-court defensive press, something Michigan has not faced all

1949 _Waterloo Daily Courier_ (Iowa) 16 Jan. 40/1 The Tigers tried a
full-court press at the start of the second half, but for the most part it
backfired as the GoHawks began to click with their fast break.

1950 _New York Times_ 8 Jan. S3/7 The Brooks packed too much height for
Kings Point and put on an effective full-court press which puzzled the
sailors throughout the initial half.

* over-the-court press

1947 _Lima News_ (Ohio) 6 Mar. 13/2 New Knoxville led only 25-21 starting
the final period but Kuck, Roger Settlage and Lee Kattman, pint-sized
guard in the skyscraper Rangers' lineup, tossed in buckets from in close
as New Knoxville broke up St. Rose's over-the-court press.

1948 _Lima News_ (Ohio) 25 Jan. 26/2 Coach Dick Bechtol switched his Jays
to an over the court press after losing three games in succession and the
Delphos club has gone great guns since.

* all-court press

1948 _Post Standard_ (Syracuse, NY) 26 Feb. 12/5 Harried by Yale's
all-court press during the first half and a sudden switch to the zone in
the second, Columbia finally came from behind with 14 minutes to play.

1948 _New York Times_ 15 Dec. 50/1 From the eleven-minute mark until the
last minute, when the all-court press of the desperate Blackbirds
permitted two unguarded opportunities from point-blank range by the
Cowboys, they took hardly a shot.

* back-court press

1949 _Washington Post_ 6 Mar. III1/8 North Carolina threw a strangling
back court press on George Washington and with it the Wolfpack squeezed
out the Southern Conference basketball championship, 55-39, here tonight.

1950 _Washington Post_ 16 Feb. 17/5 Then the Hoyas invoked a back-court
press, and Little Bob Makatura stole the ball four times to score field

* full-floor press

1950 _Chicago Tribune_ 29 Dec. 3-1/8 The Illini then went into a full
floor press defense and, with Govedarica out on five personal fouls, De
Paul started to crumble.

1951 _Ames Daily Tribune_ (Iowa) 22 Jan. 6/1 Two of the scrappiest Roland
players were guards Halvorson and Hagen, but on each team both forwards
and guards began defensive tactics beside the scoring attempts, which were
almost equivalent to a full floor press in the second and fourth quarters.

* half-court press

1953 _Waukesha Daily Freeman_ (Wisc.) 19 Dec. 7/5 A close, half-court
press helped the Indians knot the count at 18-18 with 3:13 seconds
remaining in the half.

1954 _New York Times_ 3 Jan. S3/1 Navy started a half-court press but
committed three fouls, losing Capt. Ed Hogan in the process.

--Ben Zimmer

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