Boys Basketball Falls to South Garland in Round One


Senior Xavier Elam gets hugged and congratulated on a great season by a South Garland opponent after losing 70-56 first round playoff loss. Photo by Chad Byrd

Caeden Sargent

As the boys basketball team tried to leave the court in disappointment, South Garland players chased them down to give them a quick embrace and let them know they played a great game.

Drawing the number five team in the state in the UIL 6A Bi-District game, Richardson kept the game close throughout, but couldn’t make up the deficit losing 70-56.

Senior point guard Jalen Patterson said it hurt to know that he would never play again for his high school team, but there were still positives to take away.

“I know my future is bright, so I used it as motivation,” Patterson said. “I learned that nothing is guaranteed, so every chance you get, you gotta play like you don’t want it to be your last.”

Even with a first round playoff exit, Head Coach Justin Reese pointed to the grit his team displayed in there final game of the season.

“Our kids are really tough, and we were just a few plays short,” he said. “We are never okay with losing, but the team gave us their best.”

With his senior season ending, Xavier Elam began to come to terms with the fact that he wouldn’t play again with his current team.

As I walked off I thought to myself I just poured everything I had onto that court, and how great of a journey it has been, and I’ll never forget the great moments I experienced, and I couldn’t believe this is the last time I’ll play with my class,” Elam said.

Expectations were high heading into the playoffs after winning the Prosper tournament and making the Bronze Bracket in the McDonald’s Invitational.

“I had a great time with my brothers, and I also got awards during all three tournaments which adds to the experience,” Patterson said.

Coaches motivated the team by concentrating on positives after the season wraps up.

“We always talk after playoff losses and tell the players you’re going to look back at the year and realize all the awesome things you’ve done,” Reese said.

The relationships created through the course of the year were the most important thing to Patterson.

“This class means the world to me because I went through my journey with them,” he said. “I’ll never forget these times.”