So far 2020 has been good to the Alpine boys basketball program. With District matchups just around the corner, both the varsity and top junior varsity teams won three games each in six days against Fort Stockton, Pecos, and McCamey.
“We need all the games we can get,” Fightin’ Buck Head Coach Hugh Morrissey said. “Especially after the extra weeks we spent on the football field.”
Morrissey's son also wants to make up for lost time. After missing most of the Caprock Tournament last month with the flu, Aiden returned on Jan. 2 against Fort Stockton. He had his best game of the season in a 56-54 comeback win.
“It makes you realize you could stop playing at any time,” said Aiden. “I felt like I owed it to the team.”
Alpine led by 15 points early before a quiet winter break audience. The Panthers stormed back in the third quarter, however, and still led by six points with under three minutes remaining.
Aiden had shared the rock with a lot of his friends but the fourth quarter belonged to him. He scored 15 in those final eight minutes, including all six free throw attempts. His pull back jumper with just four seconds left on the clock sealed the deal.
“The competitiveness took over,” said Aiden. “Everything is just instinct.”
The next night in Pecos, the Bucks started off slowly, but dominated the second quarter. Aiden led all scorers for the second night in a row with 19 points, and Alpine headed to the locker room up 39-25. The Bucks continued to improve their defense this week, and the Eagles couldn’t keep up in 59-49 loss.
Tuesday meant back to the classroom after a long winter’s nap, and off to McCamey for the boys hoopsters. Coach Morrissey was thrilled with the results.
“Best all-around game we played this year,” he said. “We had everyone contributing. We were clicking on all cylinders.”
While Isaiah Nuñez led the way with 18 points, Cody Barragan and Jayden Canaba each had season-high totals of 17. Barragan connected for five shots from beyond the arc, and Canaba found success both inside and out. Every victory has seemed to produce another hero for Alpine as their scoring options continue to grow.
“We shot the ball amazing,” Aiden added. “I just want to win. Seeing everyone get a piece is awesome.”
Alpine clobbered the Badgers, and led 77-39 at the end of the third in an 81-55 win. The Bucks improved to 11-4 overall with only two games to go before the District opener at Kermit on Jan. 17.
The JV Purple squad was even more dominating in their three games before the main event. They hadn’t played a game in 16 days before taking on Fort Stockton JV on Jan. 2,