There are those ‘serviceable’ high school athletes who just like to play – compete – and how easy it is to overlook the accomplishment of scoring a thousand points in a career just because they’re always there.
Russia, OH – Hayden Quinter isn’t the first Russia High School basketball player to score a thousand points in a career. There have been that many other good players – scorers – to come along before him.
But when the Raiders’ senior wing player scored his 1,000th this past week in a 62-57 win over Botkins, it struck me that his accomplishment, as such, might be the most popular of all the thousand-point scorers at Russia, or the Shelby County League, that have preceded him. And for that reason Quinter earns consideration as this week’s ‘Who’s Hot’ subject on Press Pros.
Thousand-point scorers in basketball aren’t that rare anymore. Because, the culture of the game has changed due to demand for more athletic play, more scoring, and through adjustment of the rules of the game. The three-point shot, alone, has made it one-third more easy to score a thousand points than in the days of, say, a Tom Brandewie, at Fort Loramie.
Recently, the National Federation of High School sports changed the bonus free throw rule from the one-and-the-bonus after a team’s seventh foul in the half…to two shots after five fouls in a quarter. Why did they do this? To eliminate the stigma of failure on the part of athletes who miss the front end of the one-and-one. And, to create more scoring opportunities, to make them feel better about having scored even a single point in a basketball game as we continue to dummy down the challenge of competition.
Hayden Quinter has never benefited from either, really, the three-point shot or the recent change in bonus free throws. And if you check the records at Russia he doesn’t even have that many 20-point games during the course of his freshman, sophomore, junior, and now his senior year. Coaches, and even Quinter, himself, would tell you that he’s not a great shooter. But he is a great, and consistent scorer. There is a difference!
Sheer math proves it. Over the course of his career at Russia Quinter and the Raiders have averaged about 24 games per season, given that we’re almost halfway through the current campaign. And roughly, he’s averaged about 12 points on a given night. That amounts to about 84 games during that span, times 12 points per game, equals exactly 1,008 points…from transition buckets off turnovers, points off offensive rebounds, made free throws, mid-range jump shots, and yes, the occasional three-pointer. This is how Hayden Quinter has scored his thousand points.
“He’s a great kid, and he works so hard at everything he does,” says Raider head Spencer Cordonnier.
It’s easy to see, if you observe Russia basketball. Quinter doesn’t miss games, and he’s the example of perpetual motion when he plays. He’s always in motion, offense…defense…diving after loose balls…fighting for rebounds. Without being blessed with great size or great basketball talent, he’s a coach’s dream. He’s all about helping someone else, or his team, become successful.
“He’s what you need out of a guy [like Hayden],” said teammate Braylon Cordonnier, following the Botkins game. “He lets the game come to him. He has his thousand points, but he always puts the team first.”
And he’s not one to call attention to what he’s doing. No tattoos, no piercings, no braids or ‘notice my individualism’, it’s easy to be surprised when you check the post-game scorebook and find that Quinter has scored 20 points.
He plays baseball in the spring – third base – and when the Raiders won the 2022 Division IV state championship over Lincolnview High School two years ago…Quinter quietly had three hits in that title game, drove in a pair of runs, and scored a pair in the Raiders’ 10-4 win. It was a big day for him personally, and for the Russia community. But afterwards, he just smiled at the mention of it, deferring instead to talk about teammates Braylon Cordonnier and Aiden Shappie, who also had three-hit games and a pair of RBIs.
“It feels amazing,” he said with a grin, Tuesday, talking (kind of) about his 1,000th point. “I knew I was close at the start of the season and I just wanted to get it over with as quick as I could. I just try to be a good teammate. Share the ball, look for the open guy…play together.”
The good news is that humility of that kind is not entirely dead and gone.
The bad news is that in this day of watered down accomplishment it’s easy to not notice those who just do it, everyday, twelve points at a time. We overlook them because they’re always there.
The better news is that Hayden Quinter is likely to always be around the Russia community. His family farms. I’d bet my life on him still being a good teammate, his helping others, and that people won’t even notice.
Congratulations to Hayden for scoring a thousand points at Russia…this week’s ‘Who’s Hot’ honoree on Press Pros.
The St. Henry Bank joins Press Pros Magazine in recognizing this week’s “Who’s Hot” honoree…Hayden Quinter, from Russia High School.