PLEASANTON – Last year, the Pleasanton boys basketball team suffered a bitter ending to a remarkable season. After posting 31 total wins and a perfect record in District 30-4A, the Eagles fell to Sinton in the Regional Quarterfinals in a triple overtime thriller.
This year, the Pleasanton boys are back, and they’re better than ever.
Led by a dynamic senior class and a deep collection of underclassmen, the Eagles finished the 2019-2020 regular season with an even better overall record, notching 32 wins and going undefeated at 12-0 in district play.
“It all started back in last March,” said head coach Richard Marquez. “They said, ‘You know what? We’re going to get it done. We’re going to come back, and we’re going to be right where we’re at next year.’ This group has put in a lot of hard work, and they’re very dedicated.”
All four seniors -- Santiago Arguijo, Dalton Hobbs, Kameron Parks and Kade Loeffler -- are among the Eagles’ top five leading scorers, with Arguijo (17.4), Hobbs (14.1) and freshman RJ Marquez (13.8) averaging double-digit points per game. Pleasanton’s scoring diversity was on full display in the team’s dominant 100-52 Bi-district victory over Pearsall on Monday.
“Our chemistry is great," Dobbs said. "All of the seniors have played together for 3-4 years, and we’re together all the time. We also have a lot of freshmen and sophomores, but they know how to work. They want to go as far as they can, just like us seniors. We’re just ready.”
“This is a brotherhood," Parks explained. “When we’re out here, we push each other and work hard. When we’re not, we’re always together. This is our team. It’s our everything. Everyone wants this season to go out the best way we can."
Once again, Pleasanton will square off against Sinton in the playoffs, this time in the Area Finals on Friday night. The Eagles can exact a measure of revenge for last year’s loss and punch their tickets to the Regional Quarterfinals for the third time in the last four years, but ultimately Coach Marquez wants the team focused on the opportunity at hand.
“I’m just letting them go out and play hard,” Marquez said. "Leave it all on the court. Play hard, play to the best of your ability, trust in the system, trust in your teammates and make sure we get it done.”
Tip off between the Eagles and Pirates is at 6 p.m. in Cuero.