Video: Texas bench duo contributes in their own wayThey might not be putting up big numbers, .
The best show in high school basketball may reside on the Carroll (Southlake, Texas)
Seniors Austin Blanchard
and Alex Kietzman
are reserve players raising the celebration game with elaborate and innovative routines.
Partially inspired by the antics of Monmouth's "Bench Mob" that came to fame in 2015
, Blanchard and Kietzman have dubbed themselves "The Professional Celebrators."
"We mostly rode the bench this year," Kietzman said. "The guys over at Monmouth basketball showed us a new side of basketball with their antics. Basketball and celebrations have gone hand in hand, so we decided to put the camera to it. The reactions kept getting crazier from teammates, coaches and fans."
They took things to another just about every night out.
"Once we realized that we weren't going to play all that much, we tried to find a way to impact the team and make the game fun," Blanchard said. "We'd go over our list of celebrations in the pre-game and went down the list performing them after made shots or big plays. We kept pushing the limits. We embraced the heckling and laughs from the crowd and opposing student sections. The ladies loved it, too. It was definitely our favorite part of the season."
Carroll finished the season 14-14 overall and didn't make the playoffs. But head coach Eric McDade and the Dragons will forever remember this unique group.
"This year we had a special group of kids," McDade said. "These guys represented a throwback team who loved each other. These two guys knew they weren't going to play much and instead of sulking, they embraced it. They celebrated all the big plays and got into it. It became contagious with our team, and even the starters joined in on the act when they were on the bench. They all had a blast. It was all about creating a positive experience, and they built connections and memories that will last a lifetime."
This epic duo illuminates what high school sports are all about.