The last time the El Campo Ricebirds basketball team won was in December 2017. What followed was a losing streak that spanned 45 games. At Ricebird gym Monday morning, El Campo rained threes early and often as they picked up their first win of the year over the Boling Bulldogs 51-38.
“It feels great to start out (the season) with a win in the win column,” senior guard Tanner Oldag said. “Win’s were hard to come by last season. So it’s great to start out with a W.”
In the first quarter, Oldag and sophomore Trinceton Foley got hot, scoring nine points each, hitting four three’s between them. The Ricebirds jumped out to a 23-7 lead after one.
The offense made quick work of the short-handed Bulldogs who brought only six kids to the game. The Ricebirds connected on eight threes in the first half and took a 38-20 lead into the locker room.
With the Ricebirds second unit in, Boling cut into El Campo’s 20-point lead and with five minutes left it was down to a 14-point game. The Ricebirds inserted their starters and, while they held to only four points in the quarter, the defense picked up and only allowed five points the rest of the way.
“One of the things we’re going to do is run the ball and keep the game intense. Every game, every play.” Ricebirds Coach Chris Burrow said. “Don’t be mistaken, Boling had a decent team, they just had a lot fewer kids and we were able to wear them down. The intensity of that game was almost where we need it to be. Of course, I’ll be happier when we have a couple of guards back, it was a lot of JV’ers (in the game) and they stepped up and showed some good stuff.”
Foley led the Ricebirds with 13 points, while Reynaldo Villarreal chipped in 12 more.