Boys Varsity Basketball Preview

Shoot, score, swish! Boys basketball is back!

The team opened their season with a crushing win against Seneca Valley with a score of 73-40. Junior Ray Washington led the boys with 18 points, and senior captain Raef Hetherington followed with 16 points. 

They strive to build on last year’s season that resulted in a playoff win, but ended in a heartbreaking loss to Magruder. They finished with a 11-13 record in the 2018-19 season and hope to build on their progress for this season.

The team also has a new face in the coaching staff with Desmin Wade leading the boys as head coach. Coming in over the summer, Wade has been able to create a strong bond with the team. “[We’re] a very family-oriented group,” Coach Wade says. “They actually care about each other… [I] love this group to death [and I] wouldn’t want to do it with anybody else.”

Senior Cyrus Wilson sings the same tone as well. “All the young dudes we had before are all seniors now, [so] now all those dudes have matured and built a bond and chemistry for this year.”

After Seneca Valley, the Bengals took on next door neighbors, Good Counsel, the following Friday. Fighting a hard battle, the Bengals ultimately fell to the Falcons 69-57. Trailing this game was a road clash against Wheaton, resulting in a 56-47 victory. 

The boys will return back home against the highly anticipated rivalry game against Paint Branch, which will feature a “blackout” theme for the student section. With such high tensions and emotions coming into this matchup, staying focused is key.

“It’s just another game at the end of the day,” Wade says. “We know the people from the other team, so it’s human nature to be excited. But it’s just another game where 32 minutes is going to happen regardless.”

With a fantastic start to the season, the boys look to establish themselves as one of the top teams in the county, and a force to be reckoned with. “We’re trying to put on a show for you guys every night,” Coach Wade says.

Players to watch (quotes by Coach Wade): 

  • Raef Herrington, senior: 2018 All-County selection, averaged 17 points
  • Ray Washington-Battle, junior: Transfer from Northwood High School
  • Miles Samuels, senior: “Super sleeper. Kid can score the basketball, but no one in the county knows that really.”
  • Brian Ayafor, junior: “Kid is super athletic, and nobody knows him either.”

In short, watch out for the Bengals!