COLUMBIA — Minutes after the final buzzer sounded Friday night, Flo Rida’s “Good Feeling” blared throughout Rock Bridge’s gymnasium.
It was a fitting tune for the Bruins boys basketball team, which was in high spirits after its rout of state-ranked Rockhurst (19-5), 79-47 in front of a spirited crowd for Rock Bridge's senior night.
The chipper vibes for Rock Bridge commenced after the tip, as Nick Norton rattled home a 3-pointer for the game’s first bucket. The Bruins hit 3-pointers on each of their next two possessions.
“It seemed like everything was going our way,” Ryan Kreklow said of the team’s early shooting.
The onslaught from beyond the arc was just beginning, as the Bruins would go on to hit a whopping 15 3-pointers en route to dispatching the Hawklets.
“We had a hot night,” coach Jim Scanlon said. “When you shoot the ball well it makes you look pretty good.”
Rock Bridge’s guards dazzled Friday night, as starters Jackson Dubinski, Vencel Tigue and Norton combined for 41 points. Sophomores Ryan Kreklow and Alex Ofodile pitched in an additional 25.
“You got to have strong guard play and our guards dictated the game,” Scanlon said. “We got some pretty good looks and the guys hit them. For us to be successful (against top teams) we got to have everything working every night and tonight it was.”
After a frustrating defeat earlier in the week to DeSmet, the Bruins had a bitter taste in their mouths and were in search of their confidence.
This, coupled with it being senior night, further motivated the players as the squad entered Friday night’s showdown "highly energized" for a game against a talented Rockhurst team.
The Bruins’ confidence returned following the early bombardment from 3-point territory, which set the tone for what turned out to be a very long night for the visiting Hawklets.
“We knew they were really good, they beat a lot of good teams around Kansas City,” Norton said. “After losing at DeSmet the other night, we couldn’t let our home court get taken from us.
“When those threes are going down it just picks your energy up and it makes you work harder on defense.”
With just two games remaining before the district tournament begins, the confidence booster that was Friday night’s romp is exactly what the Bruins were searching for.
That confidence was evident after the game.
“When me, Ryan (Kreklow) and (Jackson) Dubinski are shooting like that, it’s tough to beat us,” Norton said.
So, can the Bruins be defeated when they’re shooting that well from long range?
“I don’t think so,” a smirking Kreklow said.