Rouse bows out of playoffs in area round

The Raiders won the district title for the first time in school history this season


ROUND ROCK — The most successful season in the history of Rouse boys' basketball ended on Friday night as visiting Bryan downed Rouse 85-62 in the area round of the playoffs. 

Trevor Berry, the District 19-5A champs' leading scorer entering the night, totaled six points and five assists in the defeat. Carter McMahan tallied a team-high 18 points on the night.

"We had a tough game tonight," Rouse head coach Shane Krause said after the game. "This is the best team we've ever had, the most wins we've ever had. (I want to) make sure they know how proud we are of them."

Berry and McMahan, along with Chase Reck, Quinlan Daily, Ben Escobar, Payden Hesser, and Dominic Powell laced their sneakers up for the last time as Raiders.

Rouse capped off a 27-8, 15-1 season with the loss. Bryan's Zach Nutall (29 points, including three three-pointers) was too much to handle, and the high-paced offense of the Vikings gave Rouse's defense fits all night long.

In a high energy, up-tempo first quarter, the action started right from the initial tip, as Berry, the starting shooting guard, deposited a turnover into the basket just four seconds into the game.

From there, however, it was all Bryan, as the Vikings rode a heavy full court press out to an 18-4 first quarter lead. The Raiders methodically chipped away at the deficit, trailing 26-17 at the end of the frame.

The second quarter was more friendly to Rouse, which started slowing the pace down and making a difference with its shooting and perimeter defense. The Raiders trailed by five at the break.

They looked poised to give their opponents a run. Bryan took control of the game in the third quarter, outscoring Rouse 24-12 in the period. 

That quarter featured a 9-0 run by the Vikings. They ran away in the second half, outscoring Rouse 42-24 in the final 16 minutes of play.

"We had to shoot the ball well, which we knew, and we shot the ball terribly," said Krause."We got open shots all night long, their press defense really had no impact on us, we just didn't execute.

"But a lot of credit to them. They played hard, they hustled. That's the best I've ever seen them play."

The outlook on Rouse boys basketball remains a solid one, as Krause and his group prepare to regroup and defend their District 19-5A crown next winter.

"We got our first district championship, which was awesome," Krause said. "Just some of the hardest-working kids I've ever seen that bought into what we're doing and represented us well on and off the court. I'm super proud of everything they've done.

"Every year, we try to get the most out of what we have. Whatever we think we can get, that's always our goal."

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