With four potential starters sitting in the stands, the rest of the Pleasant Grove basketball team invited them to keep playing football until Christmas, if that’s what suits their fancy.
With several players seeing their first varsity action, the Hawks opened the 2017-2018 campaign by steamrolling New Boston, 82-47.
With a manic defense and on offense that played like its hair was on fire, the Hawks blew out to 23-point lead midway through the second quarter and cruised along the rest of the way.
“We have a lot of young guys, but this was a good experience for the kids,” said coach Billy Brewer. “They played well on both sides of the ball. They moved the ball well and played great defense.”
Kamreu Woods led the attack with 23 points, followed by Noah Fawbush with 21. Griffin Young hit a pair of three-pointers and finished with 10 points, while Braxton Watkins, a golf signee with the University of Houston, came up with nine points and was a constant force on defense in his first varsity basketball game.
The Hawks were whistled for a technical for a slam-dunk in pre-game warmups. That gave New Boston a 1-0 lead, its last lead of the night. Fawbush hit a trey to make it 3-1, followed by one from Watkins, and the gap just seemed to grow from there.
Layton Jackson blocked a shot, leading to a fast-break bucket by Fawbush. Woods stole the ball and drove the length of the court to make it 10-5. A few seconds later, Young hit a three-pointer to make 14-5 less than halfway through the first period.
It was 19-13 when the second quarter began. The Hawks scored on their first six possessions to key a 127-3 that put the game out of reach. Fawbush drove the lane for a bucket. Then Young hit Fawbush with a kick-out pass for a three-pointer. Woods stole a pass and went high to throw down a jam, and followed that with a three-pointer. Fawbush added to the onslaught with a drive into the lane and underhand layup, and things were out of hand.
“This was a good win. New Boston is going to be competitive in their district,” Brewer said.
“We want our football players to take care of that business,” said added with his trademark, sly smile. “Maybe they can get two championships in one season.”