The South Gray Rebels boys basketball team cruised through the Bucklin Red Aces boys basketball team Friday night, starting the season with a 90-26 road win.
The Rebels entered the season as defending 1A Division I State Champions.
Despite a massive senior class last season, the Rebels showed they still have the athletes to be a dangerous team.
“We’re a different looking team than we were last year,” South Gray coach Mark Applegate said. “We’ve got some new faces, and we’ve got some old faces playing new positions.”
Applegate said playing with chemistry was a key goal for the team entering Friday’s game.
“We just wanted to go out and just gel as a team,” Applegate said. “I felt like we really did that tonight. I thought we had kids making good passes, and seeing the floor well and I thought it was a good first game.”
First-year Bucklin head coach Derek Bevan said South Gray is a great program.
As for the Red Aces, Bevan said the team turned the ball over a lot and needs to just get stronger and a little tougher.
“The goal is to keep getting better,” Bevan said. “We’re going to take what we can from this and keep moving on.”
As the team gets ready for the Cimarron Invitational starting Monday, Bevan said the team kept hustling for him, which is the one thing he asks from them every day.
“When you’re on that floor, give me you’re all. If you get tired I’ll get you a sub. Keep going. If you give me your all we’ll put ourselves in a chance then we can worry about the other stuff, get that stuff going and move on from there,” Bevan said. “Our guys worked their butts off the whole time and just came across a very, very good opponent tonight.”
South Gray and Bucklin both head to Cimarron for the Cimarron Invitational early this upcoming week.
South Gray plays Tuesday night at 4:30 p.m. against Minneola.
Bucklin plays Monday night at 6 p.m. against Sublette.