The Garnets Boys’ Basketball team started this season with six wins and only a single loss, good enough for second place among the 22 teams in Class A. That start was particularly impressive, considering the extended high school football season had prevented half the team from practicing until just a week before the opening game.
After starting with a 66-56 win over Roosevelt High at home, Rye remained undefeated thanks to an overtime triumph over Rye Country Day School, a significant road win over Tappan Zee, and a decisive victory over an overmatched Yonkers team. The winning streak was halted by a close, 54-51 loss to Hendrick Hudson in the opener of the annual holiday tournament at Rye High School. The team closed out December with a 56-23 win over Sleepy Hollow in the consolation game of the holiday tournament before starting league play with a hard fought, 55-48 victory over Eastchester behind 13 points from guard Carson Miller.
So far, the team has been led by the dominant play of center Jake Kessner, who is averaging 14.2 points a game. In addition to his offensive prowess, he has been a standout on defense and on the glass and has been the player to whom teammates look when a game is on the line. Consistent contributions from guard Miller, guard Rockland Boisseau, and forward Andrew Wilmarth have added to the team’s success through the first seven games.
As anticipated in the preseason, the Garnets, with their height and physicality, have dominated the boards and excelled defensively. The team has held opponents to only 40 points a game, ranking them fourth in points allowed out of the 70 teams that constitute Class A and all the other classes in Section 1.
The strong start to the season is also due in part to strong bench play, led by the emergence of junior Patrick McGuire, among others. Those contributions from the bench have allowed Coach John Aguilar to use a variety of lineups based on the matchups presented on a given night.
Upcoming home games include home appearances against Hastings on Jan. 13 (an annual fund-raiser to fight pediatric cancer), Pelham on Jan. 23, and Ardsley on Jan. 31.