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Cross High School

Cross boys still searching for first victory

By C.R. Cumbee

Staff Writer

Cross—Last season the Cross boys’ basketball team placed third in the region and won a first-round playoff game. Unfortunately, most of their production graduated, leaving an inexperienced group of Trojans behind.

Head coach Ken Green’s squad is still searching for its first win of the 2018-19 campaign, but has played several larger schools to try to prepare for conference play.

“We’ll make some money before Christmas and try to win some games after,” Green said. “We’re playing a lot of people and learning each other. I’m pretty pleased with the kids, but it’s taking the younger kids some time to adjust to the varsity.”

Two seniors are in the starting lineup, with Jaylin Brown being one of the team’s leaders.

“I don’t know of anybody quicker than him from the top of the key to the basket. He’s continuing to do that well. Jaylin has taken over as the vocal leader. When he says something, they listen. We’re trying to get him to continue to do the right things and let them follow his leadership,” Green said.

Guard Terrell Takeall will be counted on more this winter as well. He had a few big games last year but will need to be more consistent over the next few months.

Junior point guard Deandre Brown, sophomore forward Dashawn Gaddis and freshman forward Ashton Howard round out the starting five for the Trojans.

“He’s a little better than 6’2, close to 6’3, and I think he’ll end up being 6’5 or 6’6,” Green said of Howard. “What’s amazing is that he’s one of my best three-point shooters. I really think the college coaches will rave over him. We’re working on his ball-handling skills so he’ll be able to play outside or inside,” Green said.

Seeing extended minutes off the bench are sophomore guard Kaiden White, forward Nekoe Dukes, and freshman guard Naz Jenkins, who Green says can “shoots the lights out.”

Cross will get some additional games over Christmas break, going to Timberland before playing a tournament at North High. Green hopes things will come together in time to make a charge at a playoff berth.

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