The Hayfield Men’s Basketball team traveled to Falls Church to take on Justice on Jan. 20, winning 78-32. The Hawks are on a five-game winning streak; they’ve only lost one game this season. 

The team is currently 13-1 on the season and undefeated in the conference. Their only loss comes from Washington, D.C.-based Jackson-Reed. 

When the Hawks played Justice, they had no problem putting up big points and played excellent offense and defense throughout the game. 

One key player who made a name for themselves during the game was Braelen Cage, who put up six threes, and a two-point field goal, comprising a total career-high of 20 points. 

The confidence is all in the hands of the Hawks. They feel good about where they are at with the season. 

“It feels good. We are trying to go out there and compete every single day,” said Coach Carlos Poindexter. “We put it known that we have to be 1-0 at the end of every game. We try to strive for that.” 

The team has been having fun knowing that they are number one in the district, according to the coach. It’s all about playing hard and having fun during the season. 

“Whenever you get to lace up and compete, it’s always fun. Playing at a high level as my team does, it’s always fun to go out there and put on a show,” Poindexter said. 

Prior to last season, the Hawks won the district and region but fell short in the state semifinals. They went on to go 32-0 and won the championship last season. For this season, it’s different. The team is playing at a high intensity and three of their main players are back. 

According to Poindexter, he sat out four of their main starters at the beginning of the game. 

“We’re a pretty deep team, it shows that we have some depth,” Poindexter said. 

Other than Cage, Jaylen Lemon was able to help the Hawks’ offense by putting up 10 points. The rest of the players on offense were able to make big plays which provided a strong lead against Justice. 

“We play at an extremely high level so when we go out there, we expect to win basketball games,” said Poindexter. “Players on the bench helped the starters clapping and cheering for them, being supportive for them.” 

According to the coach, it’s important to have that support on the sideline because it can go a long way for the team. It helps boost the confidence of the team and improve the momentum for the rest of the game. 

The coach is always looking for improvement despite them putting up an average of more than 70 points throughout the season. The most points the Hawks have scored in a single game is 85 points. 

“We could always continue to get better as far as executing, setting better screens, and getting extra possessions by getting offensive rebounds,” said Poindexter. “We always make sure that everyone gets an opportunity on the court, everybody eats.” 

Despite Justice being competitive, it didn’t hold the Hawks down and their play style which is one of the best in the district, according to the coach. Poindexter still saw Justice trying to put up points throughout the game. 

“It’s going to take them some time to get a lot better to where they need to be. But the coach is moving those players in the right direction,” said Poindexter. 

For the remainder of the season, the coach has already set the standard for the players on his team to perform at their best. 

“If the players on our team aren’t doing it then it’s the next man up,” said Poindexter. 

The coach is in his 10th season as a head coach for the team. According to him, it’s very important for his team to have the right attitude to be able to remain successful for the rest of the season. 

“We have great kids and the chemistry here is phenomenal, we look forward to the playoff run,” said Poindexter. 

But first, they have their senior night game against Annandale on Jan. 23, they have six seniors who will walk and represent the Hawks for the game.

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