Rouse clinched at least a share of the district title Friday night.
The Raiders used a defensive first quarter and exploded on offense in the fourth quarter to beat Elgin 71-52 on Friday night. They are one game ahead of Connally in District 19-5A with one game left in the regular season.
“We got off to a great start and we just wanted to stay focused,” Rouse head coach Shane Krause said. “That’s hard to do on senior night. Maintaining a high level of intensity can be hard with so many emotions, but once we overcame a few lulls and a few energy lapses, we closed out well.”
Trevor Berry scored 26 points to pace Rouse. Qinlin Daily added 15 and Dominic Powell scored nine points as all 10 players on the roster scored at least two points.
The Raiders combined to hit 10 3-pointers, led by Berry with five and Daily with three. Though the entire season, Rouse has hit 263 triples. Daily has 71 on his own and hit 10 in one game, a win against Hutto on Tuesday.
“We’re going to shoot a lot of threes,” Krause said. “I feel like if we shoot pretty good or above, we’re going to hard to beat. Some of our losses, we’ve been really bad from three. The shots haven’t been bad looks, they just haven’t been falling.”
While the offense started strong on Friday night, the defense was just as stout. Rouse opened the game with an 11-0 run and Elgin scored its first field goal near six minutes into the first quarter.
Berry hit a trio of 3-pointers in the second quarter and Rouse went into the break leading 33-19.
The Wildcats came out in the second half and got back in the game, outscoring theRaiders 18-15 in the third quarter to cut the lead to 11 points.
Elgin got as close as nine in the fourth quarter, but Berry scored 11 points in the period and Daily added five.
Rouse finishes off the regular season on the road against Bastrop Tuesday at 7 p.m.
It’s been a long time coming for the Raiders, who have finished in second place in the district four times finished in third place twice. Until this year.
“We’ve been knocking on the door,” Krause said. “It means a lot for our program. This group has really embraced the challenge of being the first group to do it. This group has set us up for success for the next decade.”