Wiley, boys’ basketball dominant in North Kansas City Tournament


Cassidy Viox

The boys’ basketball team dominated the North Kansas City Tournament this weekend, tacking on three wins to improve their record to 11-5.
The Bruins’ opening game against the Winnetonka Griffins would be a sign of good things to come.
With a well built 41-26 lead at halftime, junior guard Jack Cooper, who had nine points at the break, was confident RBHS could cage the Griffins.
In the fourth quarter, WHS racked up 21 points, but the Bruins put up 12 points of their own and pulled out a 73-58 victory to head to the semi-finals.
“We knew we were going to beat them because we outsized our opponent,” Cooper said. “We made 11 threes that game. Defensively, we pressed the whole game to speed them up and force turnovers. We were confident both defensively and offensively coming into the game.”
Junior forward Eysan Wiley led the team with 22 points. There’s been little doubt that the Jefferson City transfer has been a essential addition to the Bruins.
“I feel like I am a great fit for the team,” Wiley said. “My teammates always set me up in good places to put the ball in the basket. All I have to do is continue to take good shots.”
The second game of the North Kansas City Invitational was just as successful as the first for the Bruins. The 67-53 win over the Truman Patriots paved the team’s path to an overall victory.
“Truman was a good team. They were full of seniors,” Cooper said. “We are a young team so everybody had to contribute in order to win the game.”
The back and forth game didn’t allow either team to get more than an eight point lead until the fourth quarter, when RBHS was able to pull away and bury the Patriots and punch their ticket to the tournament final.
Wiley led the team with 19 points. He stressed the importance of the team working together offensively and defensively.
“We just played good defense like getting stops and holding them to one shot and out. On the offensive end, we continued to take good shots,” Wiley said. “I felt that I played pretty good, as well. I was loose with the ball a bit in the game, but I felt like I knocked down shots and rebounded well.”
The championship game of the tournament wasn’t as effortless as the other games, though. The Raymore- Peculiar Panthers were in postseason form and pushed RBHS until the end. The Bruins didn’t let the close score hold them back, though.
“I felt the freshmen really stepped up this tournament,” Cooper said. “We are moving in the right direction for the rest of the season.”
In a breakout game, freshman Ben Cooper scored 15 points, including three three-pointers, ending the tournament with another solid effort, boosting the team to a 54-47 win with Wiley again leading the team with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
“[The game] felt good and it was pretty exciting,” said Ben Cooper. “I hope it carries on the rest of the season. I just shot the ball with confidence and good things happened.”
The Bruins will travel to Union to compete in the Union Tournament next weekend for their last tournament of the regular season.