Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Sports Talk: The New and Exciting Young Rebel Basketball Team

As a correspondent sports writer for The Casey County News, I write an weekly editorial column for the publication. Published Dec. 11, 2013.   
I've always enjoyed basketball and I've especially always enjoyed Casey County basketball. I suppose it's kind of a natural thing when you grow up playing for a team and cheering for them, that even in their weakest moments and seasons, you find yourself the optimist and rooting them on and finding the highlights.

However, I want to stress to all Casey County fans (and even those who maybe are not fans but love basketball) that it's time to get out of the house--even if that means facing some cold--and check out this year's teams.

I cannot actually speak for the Lady Rebels just yet, as I have yet to watch them play live... But considering where they left off last year and who they've returned (and what I've gathered from following them for my articles) they are no disappointment from what one would expect this year.

The Rebels, however, I have watched play, twice now. While the win over Washington County was of course fun, it was actually our loss to Marion County that got me so excited about this team. I was disappointed no one in my family had attended the game to share the excitement with me after the two-point loss that came in the final seconds of regulation time.

This year's boys' basketball team is truly an exciting group to watch. First of all, I get a great sense of "team" from these boys simply in the way they interact in warm ups and before games and during time outs. You see slaps on the bottom, high fives, arms around each other constantly. Every time a player comes out of the game, the bench stands and gives them five for their work on the court whether that player is having a stand out game or things just aren't going his way.

On the court... now that is something to see. This team is fast, fun and unselfish. Their hustle never stops. Multiple times Marion County got an 8-10 point lead on the Rebels last week, but we always bounced back. That's impressive for a team with only two seniors and starts three freshmen. Ninety percent of the time, these young guys are going to be facing primarily juniors and seniors--which usually makes a big difference and can cause some intimidation. You see none of that with these young men.

In addition to their nonstop hustle up and down the court, I love the way this team moves the ball. They read each other well and stealing the show for themselves is the last thing on any players mind. There have been times they've even fooled me into thinking they had turned the ball over, but before I knew it, we'd scored. Instead of a turnover, it had been a crazy fast pass to another open Rebel I had not even spotted. I'd much rather watch that kind of play any day than some one man magic show.

And on a side note, I'll mention this team loves us, the Casey County community. Before their game Saturday, they started their day off by volunteering for the Salvation Army and ringing bells in Liberty. They also attended the Pictures with Santa fundraiser taking place at the high school to raise money for Braydon Taylor's battle against.

Kudos to Coach Stallworth for what your doing for these young men both on and off the court.

The Marion County game, the season kick-off for this team, was the kind of game any basketball fan wants to watch. I suggest you get to the CCHS gymnasium sometime soon before you're stuck hearing about another amazing game instead of getting to see it live.

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