To say the El Campo Ricebirds basketball team had a rough season last year might be a little bit of an understatement. After losing every game, expectations weren’t extremely high coming into this season.
In the span of six games, expectations might be changing after starting the season 4-2, the Ricebirds best open since 2016.
Without some of their guards who were playing varsity football, the Ricebirds won their first two games against the Boling Bulldogs and the Tidehaven Tigers.
After football ended, the Ricebirds got two of their three guards back (one is out with an injury) and at the Bloomington tournament, the Ricebirds picked up wins over the Sweeny Bulldogs and the Calhoun Sandcrabs. El Campo made it to the Bloomington championship game and lost in overtime to the Moulton Bobkatz. The Ricebirds played one more game at the tournament losing to the Palacios Sharks.
“Kudos to the guys, they really stepped up. They looked like a team that knows how to win and we’ve been trying to rebuild that,” Ricebirds Coach Chris Burrows said. “That was a tough loss to (Moulton) because we were 4-0 up until that point. We hit the reset button and unfortunately, Palacios got us and we’re going to hit the reset button again.”
While the team lost back-to-back games, the Ricebirds saw positive moments. The communication is something that has taken a step forward along with Burrows listening to suggestions in games from his players.
“We were in those two games, yes it turns out as losses, but they were big-big, wins,” Burrow said. “We’ve learned a lot about ourselves. We’ve learned a lot about communication and we’ve learned we don’t want to feel this way again.”
The Ricebirds will get to show how far they’ve come this weekend when they travel to play in the Sweeny tournament.