Senior nights were designed for evenings like this.
The Apex boys basketball team was hitting on all cylinders Thursday as they jumped out a 23-10 first-quarter lead and were never threatened on their way to a 76-48 upset victory over No. 7 Middle Creek in the regular-season finale.
“We were clicking,” Apex senior Ian Boyd said. “We just have to keep playing hard defense.”
Boyd added to a special senior night as he crossed the 2,000-point milestone midway through the third quarter. He posted up on the low left block and made a move over his left shoulder to score his 13th point of the game and 2,001st of his four-year varsity career that included an N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A state title his sophomore season.
The game was stopped after he scored to recognize the moment and present him at halfcourt with a ceremonial ball. Boyd walked across the court and gave the ball to his mother, who was seated at half-court.
“She was the first person I thought of to give the ball,” Boyd said, who finished with 19 points and stands at 2,007. “I love her and she’s always been there for me.”
With the victory, Apex avenged an overtime loss to Middle Creek and gained the second playoff berth from the Southwest Wake Athletic Conference over the Mustangs. Apex improved to 17-7 overall and 13-3 in conference play. Middle Creek dropped to 15-9 and 11-5.
Three other seniors hit double figures for the Cougars. Colin Molden scored 16, Maxx Owens 14 and Eric Field.
Three to know
Demetrius Bastian, Middle Creek: On a night the Mustangs struggled from the field, Bastian was the only consistent threat. He finished with 18 points.
Eric Fox, Apex: The Apex junior gave up his starting role so senior Trevor Downey could get a starting nod.
Kevin Cheng, Apex: Cougars Coach David Neal was able to play all his seniors with the one-sided result. Cheng took advantage as the senior entered midway through the fourth quarter and scored four points.
Middle Creek was playing without two key injured players. John Singleton is a starter and Riley Fredricksen a sixth man.
They said it
“This is basically as down as I’ve ever been as a coach. We did exactly the opposite of what we talked about and that’s frustrating for a coach. But I’m happy for Ian Boyd. He’s been an outstanding player and from my experiences a better person.” – Middle Creek coach David Kushner.