Holden sets RAL record as Lumberjacks cruise to victory

(Jordan Nailon/The Daily News)

It was only a matter of time before Cavin Holden broke R.A. Long High School’s all-time career scoring record. The Lumberjacks won 77-33, Monday.

Now, he stands alone on Lumberjack mountain passing all-time greats like Jack Donahue, Scott Pisapia and Adam Perry along the way. Before the season even, Holden’s coach Jeray Key thought the record might have been out of reach.

“That was a tall task coming into the season, ” the RAL coach Jeray Key said. “Knowing that he had to average over 25 a game, just to get it. That’s hard to do. I didn’t think he’d be averaging 35 points per game coming into the season. It’s been special to watch. It’s a testament to the work that he’s put in.”

Holden needed 32 to tie, 33 to set the record. He started the night off with two threes as the Jacks got off to an early lead. By the end of the first quarter, Holden had 12 points with the Lumberjacks up 18-4. That’s when the Hudson’s Bay Eagles started applying the pressure. That pressure came through double teams, box-and-ones, triple teams, any possible way to stop Holden but on this night in front of his home crowd, Holden was not going to be denied.

“My dad (Jamal Holden, RAL assistant) is pretty smart,” Holden stated. “He told me before the game that they were going to box-and-one. I’m guessing every other team is going to do that or double-team me, so in my head, I’m telling myself to give my teammates the ball. If they knock down their shots, the double team will stop coming.”

Letting his teammates shine while the game comes to him is a smart technique used by the 6-2 senior guard.

“That’s what I was thinking at first,” Holden continued. “I’m not in the game thinking that I have to get these 33 points so that I can beat the record. I’m just trying to win and move on to the next game.”

There’s no question that Cavin Holden has been the best basketball player to come through the city of Longview, but Adam Perry, the man Holden passed for the school’s career record compared him to Steph Curry with how smooth his shot is.

The R.A. Long Lumberjacks fell short of their goal a season ago and finished fifth in the state. Yes, they lost an important cog in the post in Aaron Ofstun, but the Jacks are starting to play their best basketball.

“We’re just starting to play our best basketball,” Key stated. “Everyone is doing anything they can to stop (Holden) him. We’re just playing physically, and everyone is starting to step up more and more. We know that we’re good enough to get back to that game, it’s just a matter of getting there.”

Before Holden and the Jacks set their eye on the prize though, they have to finish up the regular season and take care of business against teams in league play. They’ve got five games left in the regular season and are looking to repeat as league champions.