Capital boys basketball off to hot start it doesn't want to discuss

The Eagles are 10-0 for the first time in 36 years, but the team is staying mum about the streak.

rroberts@idahostatesman.comJanuary 11, 2014 

— Longtime 5A Southern Idaho Conference boys basketball statistician Steve Schroeder has been holding onto a statistical gem since the start of the 2013-14 season.

After Capital High posted a 53-36 victory over Centennial on Saturday night, Schroeder finally let the cat out of the bag.

For the first time since the 1977-78 season — which coincides with the last time Capital won a state championship — the Eagles are 10-0.

“We haven’t talked about that at all,” said Capital coach Paul Rush, who in common coach fashion wanted to avoid jinxing the streak. “We talk about playing present and being present. The most important thing we are doing is today’s practice or today’s game, or this play.”

Top-ranked Capital’s unbeaten run hasn’t been slowed by a relative lack of size. Instead, the Eagles take advantage of speed, athleticism and a deep bench to run down opponents.

“We don’t really have a dominant big man like everybody else does, but we have athleticism,” Capital senior guard Nicholas Dow said. “We use that to our advantage. We have one of the best athletic teams in the league, so we just run. That’s all we do.”

The Patriots received a heavy dose of Capital’s run-and-gun style Saturday. Centennial matched the Eagles early, even getting out to a 13-8 lead with 3:30 to play in the first quarter.

But Capital responded by shifting into high gear, scoring 11 straight points to end the first quarter. Once they fell behind, the Patriots were never able to catch their breath as the Eagles continued to substitute fresh legs off the bench.

“I like to try and get the energy up when I come off the bench,” said Capital junior Elvis Rudan, who contributed eight points and five rebounds.

Ten different Eagles saw playing time against the Patriots, and each one was able to score at least one basket.

“Our team chemistry is great. We love each other as a player and as a friend. We play hard for each other,” Capital junior guard Derrick White said. “We love each other more than we love ourselves in a sense.”

With Saturday’s win, Capital officially crossed the halfway point of its regular-season schedule. Players anticipate it’s only going to get harder from here on out for the Eagles to stay unbeaten.

“We have to keep practicing hard and loving each other. It’s not easy being undefeated,” White said. “We have a big bulls-eye on our back, and teams want to take us down, but we are not going to let that happen.”

Rachel Roberts: 377-6422, Twitter: @IDS_VarsityX

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