Tip off for men's basketball
BY JOHNY HALLOW ON DECEMBER, 19 2013
Basketball season has finally arrived for Rose, and players on the men’s team are prepared to take on the challenge of stepping up in the place of key players that were lost last year. Five football players were missing for the first two games of the season due to their commitment to football and the team’s run in the playoffs making it to the semi-finals. The basketball team, while missing the football players, has been forced to start their season with a fraction of the team missing.
“Our biggest goal as a team is to make sure that we can continue to improve as the season goes on and hopefully make a run in the playoffs,” senior Matthew Romagna said.
Romagna hopes that the team will continue to grow together as a family, including the players who missed out on the first couple of weeks of the season due to football.
The basketball team has had two games cancelled due to the football team’s success in the playoffs. The games have been cancelled because schools needed their multisport athletes to finish football season before beginning basketball.
The Rampants are struggling to find their rhythm, as they were 0-2 without the football players. One of their losses comes from defending 3A state champions Rocky Mount, the other from North Lenoir of Kinston in which the Rampants committed 32 turnovers.
“Having the football players back playing has helped us a lot,” junior Sentell Green said, “we needed the height down low as well as the guards.”
Having only two “big men” for any basketball team can be tough, especially when playing a bigger team such as Rocky Mount who had two men that were 6’7 and one at 6’8”.
“The centers needed help down low,” sophomore Quinton Jones said, “They got tired easily, and having the football players back on the team has given us more height.”
Jones said that in order for the Rampants to have a successful season, defense, guard play and effective big men will need to step up.
“As a team we need to restrain from playing 100 miles an hour,” Romagna said. “We need to slow down and play the game we have been playing since we were little.”
The football players made their return Dec. 9 and won by double digits versus North Lenoir, who defeated the Rampants the week before. Sophomore Cornell Powell’s first game back was impressive, scoring over twenty points and carrying out a slam dunk.
The Rampants hope that having the football players back will be the turning point for their season. Rose has only had one loss since the return of the football players to the basketball team, making their record climb to 3-3.