Game Summaries & Headlines.
By Matthew Valle ‘21
As the Cardinals strutted onto the court for the official opening of the 2017-2018 basketball season, these talented, young men were already looked upon throughout the entire CHSAA division as a special group. They entered the home opener against Christ the King as the reigning 2016-2017 CHSAA “AA” City Champions.
Led by veteran guards Jontai Williams '18, Tyrese Williams ‘18, and Joe Toussaint '19, this first game was said to be sold-out and these Hayesmen didn’t disappoint with a convincing 20-point victory against the Royals.
The first quarter was filled with excitement and drama.
With Christ the King comes size and with two of their young players, who stood at 6’ 11", it definitely appeared as if the Cardinals would be facing a huge dilemma throughout the game.
A possible mismatch on the court? Not in the slightest.
Hayes jumped out to an early 31-18 lead to end the first quarter, thanks to Williams knocking down five out of seven three-pointers in the first quarter.
At one point during the second quarter, Hayes continued to dominate as the lead grew up to 22 points
Hayes’ dominant backcourt completely outplayed Christ the King and they didn’t seem to have an answer.
Hayes pulled away due to the importance of an impressive, outside jumper and the Cardinals found themselves a weak point in the Royals’ defense.
The Hayes’ offense crushed Christ the King’s spirits as they continued to allow the basketball back into the hands of the defending “AA” champions who showed why this particular team is quite talented.
Tyrese Williams and Jontai Williams led all scorers entering the second half
The Cardinals relied heavily on the outside jumper hitting 11 “treys” to end the first half 49-35.
Dominating the third quarter, Hayes carried a dazzling momentum for the home crowd and alumni in attendance. Hayes’ baskets came in bunches during the third quarter due to Jaylen Murray ‘21 giving the team an additional boost off the bench that expand their lead for the remaining second half.
The Cardinals flipped the offensive mentality as they focused their attack inside the paint rather than shooting from the outside.
The third quarter ended with Hayes dominating Christ the King 68-51. The support of the fans and faculty gave Hayes the ultimate “thumbs-up” as they closed the game out in dramatic fashion.
As the first game of the season ended, one could hear the chants of “we want Rays!”
The final score: 84-64.
After the game, Tyrese Williams, who had a game-high 23 points, described the offensive explosion of a “just shoot” mentality. “We know our spots and we shot them out of their zone,” said Williams.
Jontai Williams ‘18 who finished with 20 points said, “Of course, people are going to sleep on us.”
It's quite early in the year but Hayes proved that they have what it takes to repeat as CHSAA “AA” city champions based on this performance.
Beating a powerhouse program like Christ the King by 20 points can be a statement that they are better than ever.This statement win can be a showcase for all of the hard work they have put in.
There was a reason why the Hayes’ “AA” City Championship banner was raised to the rafters prior to the opening tip-off.
This team is very,very good. Up Hayes!