Memorial dream season clashes Friday night with dominant Ellison Eagles
Published 12:36 am Friday, March 3, 2023
Saving the best for last.
This week across Texas has been filled with marquee basketball playoff games, but tonight’s showdown between the Memorial Titans and Ellison Eagles has the makings of an instant classic.
Memorial is riding a 20-game winning streak and strong Regional Quarterfinals performance, where the Titans defeated Houston Sterling 63-46.
But Titans’ next opponent is the No. 2 ranked team in the state from Killeen.
“Those guys are good, physical and tough,” Memorial coach Alden Lewis said. “They present situations you don’t see all the time. We are going to have to be prepared. That is why we made the schedule we made to be ready for these games. We are going to need a good game plan and compete and play at a high level to go get this win.”
The Titans are scheduled to play at 8 p.m. today at Berry Center Arena in Cypress.
Tickets are $10 plus convenience fee (students and adults) and sold online only at https://cfisd.hometownticketing.com/embed/event/2113.
There will be QR codes outside the arena to purchase tickets through HomeTown Ticketing.
Lewis does not anticipate the late start impacting his players’ performances, noting most games tip off at 7 p.m. or later throughout the season.
“The message from myself and our coaching staff is one game at a time,” he said. “I tell the kids everyday, we are 0-0. We only worry about the next game in front of us. Throughout a winning streak or season, not everything is going to be pretty. You get through it.”
Lewis and the rest of his staff remind the student athletes “on an almost a daily basis” that they are meeting their potential. He noted the group initially had a “little problem” believing and understanding the team’s potential.
“Now they understand how good they could be, they understand what their potential is,” he said. “They are buckling down and believing they can do whatever is put in front of them.”
The effort is led on the floor by senior Ke’Andre Jones, who last month was celebrated by the school for reaching the 1,000-career points milestone.
No. 0 is a huge piece of the Titans success.
“He does so much on the court for us that a lot of people don’t realize,” Lewis said. “A lot of people just think about putting the ball in the basket, but he also does a lot of things for us that are super valuable. He understands his role and plays his role. He is a huge part of our success, a huge part of our team and, hopefully, he can keep up what he is doing.”
Another important contributor is Cameron Bryant, who is finishing his first full varsity season for the Titans. Lewis noted the sophomore has found his way and role for the team, which means doing a lot of the hard work inside.
“He had a really good summer and fall and came into himself,” the coach said. “He is understanding his capabilities and understanding what he can do. He is providing a very valuable piece for us on the floor.”
The Titans are looking for a complete team effort today in what is expected to be one of their toughest challenges of the season.