Chris Bryant, Canyon basketball, Sr.
On the court: Canyon is ranked No. 9 in the state in Class 4A, and the Eagles have lived up to that by winning two straight tournaments. Bryant was the biggest reason why they won last weekend’s Catclaw Classic in Abilene, as he was named the tournament MVP while Canyon went 4-0 as the tournament’s only unbeaten team. He got the Eagles off the ground in the tournament opener against Abilene Wylie, as he had a game-high 19 points in a 72-39 victory. Bryant then had 17 points in a 40-26 win over Abilene High. The Eagles beat Chisholm Trail 38-36, then ended the tournament with a sweep of the Abilene schools, as Bryant had 14 points in a 48-43 win over Abilene Cooper. He averaged 14.2 points and 9.4 rebounds a game in five games last week, as Canyon is now 10-2 heading into the District 4-4A opener Friday at West Plains.
Coach Travis Schulte: “He’s really close to averaging a double-double. He gets 10-12 points a night and 10-12 rebounds a night and that’s huge for us. He’s just rebounding the ball at an incredible rate. He had four dunks this past weekends and two of them were putbacks off misses. He’s a monster inside and nearly demands a double team each time he touches it in there, so his value to us is just incredible. Whenever (opponents) have to send two at him that just opens it up for those other guys whenever the ball does come out. He’s just so much more aggressive. His motor runs extremely hot this year. Last year he was feeling it out still with his first year on varsity. He handles the ball well on the perimeter so we run some sets to get him out there. He knows what our expectations are and he’s free to go play.”
Bryant: “I felt like I played pretty great. It was more of a motor type thing for me. The last tournament (at Frenship) I don’t feel like I fought as hard as I should have. Coach Schulte talked about how I should be working harder so I just felt like that propelled me in this tournament. Around the rim is where I like to play the best. I like to play around the arc if I need to, but playing down in the plate is definitely what I like to do. After the Chisholm Trail game, me and Kemper (Jones) were sitting there in the lockerroom and to be honest we were kind of tired at that point. We thought we already won the last tournament, so let’s go out and win this one. Ball control is something I needed to focus on. That and turnovers were something I kind of struggled with last year. I’m doing a little bit better with that this year.”
Favorite band or musician: Kanye West
Favorite social media platform: Twitter
Favorite athlete: Luka Doncic
Bet you didn’t know: Lived in Castle Rock, Colo. until he was five.
Parents: Brandon and Leslie Bryant