RBHS varsity boys basketball win vs KCE, 88-43


Bailey Blackburn

Photo by Bailey Blackburn.

Brandt Stewart, Sports Editor

Holding their own on home court, the RBHS varsity boys basketball team secured a victory against the Kansas City East (KCE) Bears Dec. 17.

The confidence of the team originated from the very start of the game, with senior forward Kanyon Hummel successfully winning the tip-off, hitting the ball to junior guard Andrew May, who then proceeded to score a layup only six seconds into the first quarter.

The Bruins continued with this early-gained energy, scoring a barrage of points, not without resistance from the Bears, who were able to tie the score 6-6 with six minutes and two seconds left in the first quarter.

Following a bad pass and foul by the Bruins, the Bears responded with a made free throw, pulling ahead 6-7.

A steal by Hummel and assist by senior guard Hudson Dercher proved to be useful in regaining the previously found “groove” by the Bruins, and lasted throughout the remainder of the game.

Hummel’s domination in the paint and excellent ball movement allowed RBHS to regain the lead, 14-7. The team’s dynamics and patience for openings to score left the KCE Bears in a state of disorientation, and also displayed the Bruins’ ability to well-execute a performance.

“I thought we played really well as a team,” junior guard Brady Bowers said, “and everyone played hard.”

The Bears became even more discouraged as sophomore Sam Kaiser entered the game fresh off of the bench to conduct a smooth one-handed dunk, further enhancing the Bruins’ lead and riling the already boisterous student section.

Bowers segwayed off of this lead, earning a layup down in the paint with around one and a half left in the first quarter, and hitting back-to-back three point shots to end the quarter 28-11 in favor of RBHS.

The Bruins’ confidence in the first quarter carried them through the second, the team continuing their scoring streak with a free throw from junior guard Connor Rolwing and a layup by Kaiser to make the score 33-11.

The Bruins were intimidating in both size of the players, and in offense and defense, outmatching KCE. The Bears continued to score in patchy amounts, also failing to stop the Bruins from advancing.

After another spanse of points scored by junior Mark Hajicek and Kaiser, freshman Reese Minnix used an effective post move with 40 seconds left in the second quarter, raising the score to 51-16.

To end the second quarter, RBHS defended the basket aggressively, getting lots of steals, and also drawing a foul by Kaiser, who made a free throw.

There was no change in pace as half-time ended and the third quarter began. Hummel, May and Dercher all scored less than a minute into the quarter, the point count rising to 61-18. The third quarter proved to be a bit less exciting than the previous ones, including a fair amount of turnovers and missed baskets, but RBHS ultimately recovered with a brutally drawn foul by Kaiser and two made layups. Rolwing knocked down a corner three-pointer and fast break layup, score adding to be 76-22.

“The game went really well,” Rolwing said. “We played [excellently] as a team.”

RBHS did all of the hard work in the former three quarters, taking a rest in the fourth by sending in their usually benched players to receive some playing time. With this adjustment, the game changed pace to become slower, with RBHS and KCE scoring here and there, concluding with a solid two-handed dunk by Minnix with about five minutes left in the fourth, ending the game 88-43.

“[I just hope] we play Rock Bridge basketball the way we are supposed to play,” Head varsity coach Jim Scanlon said.

Though their win was a strong one, the Bruins believe that there are some things that will aid in their improvement as a team.

“As a team we could have communicated a little more on defense which we have been working on and improving on,” Bowers said. “In the future, I hope we will continue to keep pushing each other in practice so that we can keep winning games.”

How do you think the game went? Let us know in the comments below.