Kent-Meridian’s Jordan Bailey looks to break the Decatur full-court press in the first quarter of their Monday night game with Decatur. Photo by Ben Ray/Sound Publishing

Kent-Meridian’s Jordan Bailey looks to break the Decatur full-court press in the first quarter of their Monday night game with Decatur. Photo by Ben Ray/Sound Publishing

Basketball: Kent-Meridian beats Decatur for first 2-0 start since 2014

The Kent-Meridian Royals opened the high school boys basketball season with two wins for just the first time since 2014 by taking down the Decatur Gators, 75-59.

It is the first time the Royals have started the season 2-0 since 2014, and finished the season with a 10-10 record. They beat Bonney Lake, 76-57, to open this season Dec. 3.

The Royals were led in their Monday night win over Decatur by junior center Trey Sopher, who scored 18 points and had 12 rebounds.

Coach Marcus Graham said he told his big man he needed to be more aggressive.

”He listened, and he then performed at a high level… That’s big for him,” Graham said.

Sopher said he was prepared.

“I was just focused the whole day,” he said. “I woke up thinking about the game. I was honestly just locked in.”

That mindset also kept him laser-focused during the game.

“I didn’t even know I was that close to a double-double in the game until my coaches told me,” Sopher said.

Kent-Meridian also had strong performances from seniors Jordan Bailey and Tariq Hill. Hill had 17 points and Bailey tallied 13. There were 25 fouls called on the Gators, resulting in 32 free throws for the Royals. Bailey and Hill accounted for 22 of those shots.

Graham was really proud of the way his team played.

“We’re scrappy and we get after it,” he said. “I love what I am seeing in these first two games.”

Kent-Meridian is looking to make the state tournament for the first time this century. It is going to take a lot of work in a league where the Royals play Auburn, Kentwood and Federal Way, but those teams can be seen as what it takes to make that jump.

“We got high hopes, we set goals,” Graham said. “One game at a time though. We set goals and we are crossing them off one at a time.”

The Royals face their biggest challenges of the season so far over their next two games. On Dec. 8, Kennedy travels to Kent to take on the Royals, and on Dec. 13, they take on Federal Way.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kentreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

KM defense looking to get a stop against the Gators (1 JR. Joel Remos ) (23 JR. Trey Sopher) (3 SR Jordan Bailey). Photo by Ben Ray/Sound Publishing

KM defense looking to get a stop against the Gators (1 JR. Joel Remos ) (23 JR. Trey Sopher) (3 SR Jordan Bailey). Photo by Ben Ray/Sound Publishing

More in Sports

t
Arizona’s NHL rookie Guenther assigned to Kent-based Thunderbirds

WHL team loads up on talent; 10 players taken in NHL Draft; Guenther 9th overall pick in 2021

t
Ex-Kentwood star Courtney Vandersloot to play for New York Liberty

Point guard leaves Chicago Sky; will join former Storm star Breanna Stewart in New York

t
Kent Parks staff seeks halt to bad behavior at youth basketball games

Email sent from city after coaches, parents verbally abuse officials, players

t
Emerald Downs in Auburn releases 2023 stakes schedule

Purses worth $1.24 million scheduled for 23 featured races; season runs May 6 to Sept. 17

Kentridge freshman Jayla Brown takes the ball down the floor on a fast break. Photos by Ben Ray/Sound Publishing
Basketball: Kentridge girls fall to Decatur in middle of playoff race

Kentridge High School lost just its second North Puget Sound League (NPSL)… Continue reading

t
Gonzaga women’s basketball to honor ex-Kentwood star Vandersloot

WNBA player to have Gonzaga jersey retired and hung at McCarthey Athletic Center in Spokane

Kentridge senior Dominic Randhawa plays tight defense on a Federal Way player. Photo Credit: Dee Torres
Federal Way drops Kentridge boys in heavyweight bout

Eagles pull away in second quarter en route to 76-62 victory

t
King Showcase in Kent to feature state-ranked high school basketball teams

8-game boys and girls tournament Jan. 16 at ShoWare Center includes Kentridge boys against Mount Si

t
Thunderbirds’ Ratzlaff chosen WHL Goaltender of the Month

Ratzlaff compiles 8-0-0-1 record in December for Kent-based team ranked No. 1 in the CHL

Chargers sophomore Jamari Harris drives to the basket. Photos by Ben Ray/Sound Publishing
Basketball: Kentridge Chargers lead NPSL standings so far

In a battle of the ridge lines, Kentridge emerged victorious Dec. 22… Continue reading