Five Questions: Rainier Beach (99) vs. Moanalua (53)

High School
Washington

Posted On: 12/19/17 4:50 PM

RAINIER BEACH, Seattle, WA— In a matchup between a pair of 2 powerhouses, it was nationally ranked Vikings who took a rode win at a neutral zone win over the Moanalua Menehunes.

The game got off to a bit of a sloppy start on both sides, but started to pick up in the second quarter, as the lions used an aggressive defensive attack to take the Vikings out of there sets offensively.

The second half saw more of the same, with Rainier Beach eventually building momentum and made a courageous attempt at a comeback, before an onslaught came from the Moanalua Menehunes. The Menehunes are from Honolulu Hawaii and are coached to perfection by Byron Melo.

Can anyone in the state contend with Rainier Beach?

It is not hard to believe that the Vikings were able to add such talent to there roster. If you look at the Vikings pedigree and the history of championships and high level talent to come out of that school. I’m sure there is a line leading around the school of basketball talent wanting to play for Rainier Beach and besides having one of the most highly recruited guards in the nation Kevin Porter Jr. and a onslaught of High D1 recruits like Trevante Andersen, Nehemie Kabeya and Kenny Curtis makes this roster really stand out and fill the gym when it’s game time. I do foresee this team playing on the national stage and a great homecoming would be the Dick’s Nationals. I don’t believe they will suffer a loss by any team in the state of Washington. I believe this team will battle it out in the state tournament and will face the bulldogs of Garfield.

And if so, what’s the recipe?

If you’re going to beat the Vikings, you’ll want to start with a point guard who doesn’t turn the ball over and who can attack the rim in transition. The Vikings will pressure you full court and with there length they cover a lot of ground. So the opposing team will need to put length on the floor and do the same thing on the defensive end. The opposing team cannot play a half court game and allow Rainier Beach to load up. Every rebound, every steal, every chance you get to push the ball you HAVE TO. The only chance you have is speeding the game up and using foot speed to create easier opportunities for yourself. On the glass you’re going to need length and beef as well. Porter and Andersen have superior athleticism and can out jump anybody. Big physical guys in the post could pose a issue for the Rainier Beach’s big’s. With all that said you will also need to play a near perfect game especially on the offensive end.

How good will the bench of Rainier Beach be?

The Vikings have a really talented starting five, a group that plays really well together. But they need to get more production off of the bench so that the starts don’t use all there miles throughout the season. They have some solid guys coming off the bench but they can at times play with a non-aggressive attitude. With Stevie Smith leading the pack he is a D1 recruit who can get his shot whenever he wants. Sometimes playing behind studs like that psychologically it can take a toll and minimize your aggression. Nate Murray and Micah Monroe have a the green light coming of the bench as well. With time the bench will produce 30% of the scoring output per game.

Is there a way to quantify the state tournament experience of the program and there history?

Probably not, but when you watch them play, it’s clearly an edge they have over their competition. As  was making their run, that trio was calm and made winning plays. Kenny Curtis took advantage of a gambling defense and had a few drives for layups. Roberson calmly knocked down a couple of corner 3’s with a defender flying at him. Porter was key with jumped the passing lanes and got multiple layups out of it. As other players were scrambling around, they were composed on the floor, and that’s something that comes with the experience of playing in high-level games. The biggest difference in this game was that the Vikings’ have state champions on their roster and they looked unflappable.

How do you slow down the 4 headed monster of Kevin Porter Jr., Trevante Andersen, Kenny Curtis and Nehemie Kabeya?

Rainier Beach Vikings star Kevin Porter Jr, was tremendous in leading the attack and making sure everybody got involved and the ball was being distributed to multiple guys. Trevante Andersen as good a shooter as there is in the state off the dribble, with the ability to stop and elevate into his jumper on a dime, and he’s become a much more confident shooter from the arc as his high school career has progressed. If you leave him six inches of space, he’ll shoot it over you after a hard dribble. Nehemie Kabeya is a high level scorer in the paint but he can also make plays for others. You have to make him give the ball up, then deny and don’t let him get it back. Kenny Curtis is a super talented scorer who is always going to get his points, but the more you make him play without the ball, the better. There is no stopping there attack. You literally have to match there output with scorers of your own. The best way to take down the 4 headed monster is to OUTSCORE THEM!!!