1125bohonAUDRiverisde Military basketball coach discusses newcomer Brandon McKinney
Richard Tribble, Riverside Military: 11 points, five assists against Lakeview Academy last Thursday.
John Ogguniya, Riverside Military: 13 points, 10 rebounds against Lakeview Academy last Thursday.
Louisa Jacobs, Lakeview Academy: 13 points, three rebounds and two assists against Banks County last Thursday.
Shunquez Stephens, West Hall: 18 points against Jackson County last Thursday.
Terrell Penland, West Hall: 14 points against Jackson County last Thursday.
Kavon Williams, West Hall: 14 points against Jackson County last Thursday, 13 points against Pace Academy last Saturday.
Marquise Stephens, West Hall: 13 points against Pace Academy last Saturday.
Jayla Moon, West Hall: 15 points against Jackson County last Thursday, 17 points against Pace Academy last Saturday.
Jay Smith, Jackson County: 34 points against West Hall last Thursday.
Ashley Skelton, Jackson County: 22 points against West Hall last Thursday.
Kayneshia Maddox, East Hall: 16 points, five rebounds and six blocks against Lumpkin County last Saturday.
Jasmine Jenkins, East Hall: 15 points and three assists against Lumpkin County last Saturday.
Ashley Brown, Lumpkin County: 27 points against East Hall last Saturday.
Cara Malone, Lumpkin County: 24 points against East Hall last Saturday.
Peyton Robertson, Chestatee: 15 points and 12 rebounds against Milton last Saturday, 15 points, five rebounds and three assists against St. Pius X last Friday.
Branden Jovaag, Chestatee: 21 points against Milton last Saturday.
Chelsea Wilson, Chestatee: 18 points and three assists against St. Pius X last Friday.
Branden Smith, Chestatee: 21 points against St. Pius X last Friday.
Devaris Finch, Johnson: 19 points against Monroe Area last Saturday.
Chris Henry, Johnson: 15 points against Monroe Area last Saturday.
Quintavious Cheek, Johnson: 14 points against Monroe Area last Saturday.
Blake Sims, Gainesville: 12-for-21 passing for 222 yards and three touchdowns against Cartersville last Friday.
Teryan Rucker, Gainesville: 103 rushing yards and two touchdowns on seven carries, two catches for 97 yards and one touchdown against Cartersville last Friday.
Darius Minor, Jefferson: 16-for-26 passing for 219 yards and three touchdowns against Lovett last Friday.
Hoytez Damons, Jefferson: Six catches for 135 yards and one touchdown against Lovett last Friday.
It’s been a busy couple of weeks for Riverside Military’s Brandon McKinney.
After finishing football two weeks ago, he had to take off his pads and put on his shoes on for basketball season quickly enough to be ready for the first game.
The rush, however, didn’t throw him off.
After only three practices and one game with the Eagles, McKinney scored 21 points and had 10 rebounds in Riverside’s second game, a 71-65 win against Lakeview Academy last Thursday.
But the position he played made the game even more difficult, especially for a player who just joined the team.
With three guards fouled out, McKinney’s position went from forward to everywhere.
“He was surprised. All of our guards fouled out and he was the only person we had left to play point guard,” Riverside coach Matt Bohon said. “He had never practiced it (the position) but he did a good job doing it.”
According to Bohon, McKinney never objected to playing all over the court. In fact, he never said anything at all, taking the challenge in stride.
“He’s had a great attitude so far,” Bohon said. “When I said to him, ‘You’re the point guard,’ he just went about his business.”
That business involved keeping his team in a game that was almost lost.
Riverside (1-1) held off a Lakeview rally attempt in the fourth quarter before putting the Lions away for good late in the game.
Quite the heroics for a player in only his second game ever with the Eagles. The 6-foot-5 junior transferred to Riverside this year from Brookwood High School, and made his Eagles debut in a football uniform.
Earning the starting tight end spot, McKinney finished the season as one of Riverside’s top receivers with 376 yards and six touchdowns on 30 receptions.
It was during football season that Bohon saw McKinney for the first time playing pick-up games with fellow cadets in the gym. From that day forward, he knew he had a good player joining his team.
“I had seen him in gym a little bit over the summer and on the weekend when football wasn’t going on,” Bohon said. “So it wasn’t a total surprise. We knew, and the kids knew, that he could play.”
According to Bohon, McKinney’s best attributes are his knowledge of the game and his versatility, as he showed against Lakeview.
It also helps to be 6-foot-5, which allows him to pull down rebounds easily against smaller opponents.
“From what I’ve seen in two games and three practices, he has good basketball sense,” Bohon said.
That basketball sense will be needed, as Riverside is in its first season back in the GHSA since 2001, where it will face some of the toughest teams it has seen in years.
“I don’t expect anyone to average 20 points a game, if he does that would be awesome,” Bohon said. “But after a couple of games he’s shown that he can."