Xavier Hernandez did a little bit of everything for Atchison High School basketball.
Hernandez scored a career-high 37 points in the Redmen’s 73-52 victory over Sumner Academy Friday night at home.
The senior also contributed in handling the ball and with rebounds on the night.
“He played really well in a lot of different ways, especially handling the basketball,” Coach Pat Battle said. “He played with a lot of power and a lot of strength tonight.”
Hernandez’s performance was critical with fellow senior Xavier Cushinberry out.
“As a leader of the team it’s important for me to lead in many different aspects and it just so happened tonight was about scoring that many points,” Hernandez said.
Atchison went into the half with a 29-24 lead and Hernandez led the way with 20 points.
The Redmen (10-7) were able to separate in the last quarter and half of the game with a little bit more of a balanced attack.
Battle said his team did well at running an offense that countered the fast paced style of the Sabres.
“We kind of really slowed them down and went at their defense on the perimeter,” Battle said. “We also did a good job rebounding which was something important going into the game.”
Hernandez said the second half of games has been their strength this season.
“Usually in the first half we have a tough time getting adjusted but once we figure it out we’re able to hit some shots,” Hernandez said.
Sophomore Reaf Bowen was second on the team with 14 points.
Hernandez said he feels confident in his team’s ability with about a week left in the season until Sub-State.
“We’re going to need each other more than ever and if we stay strong through the final weeks we have a good shot at making it to the state tournament this year,” Hernandez said.