The Hays Rebel boys basketball team kicked off its season Friday with a 70-53 win over KIPP Academy. The Rebels scored the win after being down 15-12 at the end of the first quarter.
“It was a good team win,” Hays head coach Matthew Sandoval said. “A lot of guys contributed tonight. It was not our best basketball, but it is the first game of the season. So we will watch the film and some of the things were apparent we need to work on and we are going to find the things that weren’t so apparent that we need to work on and keep getting better at those things.”
After falling behind 15-12 in the first quarter, the Hays offense got in rhythm and outscored KIPP by 20 points through the next three quarters.
“We are fairly young as a team, so I think there were some nerves involved,” said Sandoval about the slow start. “You know we’re not making any excuses, I just think that we found a way to win. And I think that’s a very good sign, so a healthy team atmosphere.”
Hays senior forward Dre Green led the Rebels in points with 26 on the night, while also adding two rebounds, two assists, one block and one steal. The next top scorer for the Rebel offense was junior forward Noah Fultz with 15 points.
“He (Green) is one of our seniors and he did what he is supposed to do,” Sandoval said. “He is supposed to carry the team and be a leader and I thought he did just that. He played great tonight and we expect that every game from him.”
The Rebel bench provided a spark in the second quarter that led to Hays’ offensive turnaround the rest of the game. Freshman guard Will Agnew contributed five points and five steals off the bench with constant defensive pressure. Other contributors off of the bench were junior forward Jacob Monroe, and sophomore forward Carlos Rocha. Monroe had four points and two rebounds, while Rocha added seven points, five rebounds, one block and one steal.
“I thought Carlos Rocha did outstanding tonight,” said Sandoval. “I thought Jacob Monroe did outstanding tonight. There are a lot of guys that show flashes of brilliance, but like I said we’re young and I think we have yet to see the real Hays Rebels yet. It’s coming along.”
Hays hosts Akins Nov. 17 at 7:30 p.m. at Bales Gym, which is then followed by a home game against Austin Nov. 21 at 2:30 p.m.