Northern Oklahoma College Enid’s 97-95 win over Redlands was Denzil Haynes’ kind of game.
While the rest were running up and down the floor with the uptempo Cougars, Haynes was around to do the dirty work with six rebounds — two offensive and four defensive to go with eight points. The Jets 13 offensive rebounds and a 45-32 advantage on the boards played a big difference in the game.
“That was a big confidence-builder for us,’’ Haynes said. “It brought us together. It was a good win, especially when Kennon (Ballance) got the steal and game-winner. We can go into Eastern (Oklahoma) with a lot of positive energy.’’
The Jets will need that energy against the Mountaineers (12-8, 2-8) today at Wilburton in the second half of a women-men’s doubleheader.
NOC Enid won a shootout, 116-101 at the Mabee Center last month.
“We’re going to keep them down and keep us going,’’ Haynes said. “It’s going to be a lot similiar to Monday.’’
The Jets (12-9 overall, 5-6) are going for their fourth win in their last five games.
Haynes has been a strong role player for the Jets averaging 7.1 rebounds and 7.2 points per game with 18 steals, seven blocks and 21 assists. He is shooting 49.6 percent from the field and 62.2 percent from the foul line.
“I try to bring a lot of positive energy off the bench with my rebounding and hustle,’’ Haynes said. “I like doing the little things for my team and try to get us a win. I’ve been more aggressive the second semester. I think I’m getting to the free throw line more and attacking the rim more.’’
Jets assistant coach Chris Gerber said Haynes has been doing “what we rely on him for. He gets a lot of easy rebounds. We need him to finish stronger around the rim better, but he’s doing a good job.’’
Haynes, a native of New York City, works with Gerber and teammate Ray’Shawn Dotson daily on rebounding. Fellow front-liners Sebastian Gray, Bryshon Bryant and Houston Johnson “have been pushing me to be the best I can be,’’ he said.
“You just need to get in good position,’’ said Haynes about the key to rebounding and inside scoring. “I’ve been working to get into position to score and help my team.’’
Haynes started five games a year ago when he averaged 5.3 points and 4.6 rebounds in helping the Jets reach the national tournament for the first time.
“It’s been a little bit easier this year,’’ he said., “but I have to play a bigger role as a sophomore. They expect a lot of leadership from me and they expect more out of me. I can’t sit back and let somebody else do the work for you.’’
His leadership is being even more counted on with sophomore point guard Dyaire Holt suspended.
“Dy was a big part of the team,’’ he said. “We have to step up to bring up what he brought us and pick up the slack.
“I think I have been playing pretty well, but I have to turn it up more if we’re going to make a deep run in the regional and national tournament. I think we’re clicking together now and we’re poised to make a run. Last year showed me how far a team can go if we stick together.’’