Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record
Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record
Noah Reese’s team, the Goddard Rockets, played a tough District 4-5A schedule. Some of the losses were tough. They played Hobbs, Roswell and Carlsbad. It took that schedule for them to be ready for 4A district play.
One of the few bright spots for Rocket coach Anthony Mestas was Noah Reese. Reese was dominant from the 3-point line but did the majority of his damage down low. Not a lot of teams could handle his moves in the low post or his relentless hustle on the glass.
Reese is a quick jumper but had to overcome an injury to his calf against Hobbs. He was fouled and when he went to the free-throw line, Reese felt a pain that threatened to derail his season. Without his inside presence, it allowed other teams to load up in the paint. Noah said when he was injured, he tried to get back in the lineup because he knew his team needed him to play. Especially since the team was young last year.
“Nobody could handle me down low,” Reese said. “I’m a humble person, but the statistic shows that teams had to double me.”
Reese was selected as second-team all-state this year. He seems to be one of those players that has been around forever. He has. Coach Mestas brought him up when his freshman season was over. His goal for his senior year is to be selected first-team all-state.
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“I’m excited and thankful to make all-state,” Reese said. “There is always room for improvement. I’m never satisfied and I’m always pushing to do better and be better.”
Reese said he plans on working on his handles and his shooting with his dad, Marvin Reese. Noah Reese wants to get better at the elbow and his 3-point shot. His goals are to make all-district for the third consecutive year. Reese would also like to make it back to the state tournament. With five seniors returning, anything is possible.
Reese’s exploits as a freshman helped propel the experienced Rockets to a state championship run.
The team was led by two great guards in Jonah Chavez and Brandon Montanez to go with lockdown defender Jon Carrillo and the rugged defense of Hunter Beene. The team had inside scoring with the feathery touch of Derek Carrica.
Goddard would go undefeated in district play, winning the regular-season title — and the district title in a nail-biter at home, to make it to state. That Goddard team could run the fast break, run their half-court offense and play inside out.
One of the keys to that season was Mestas bringing Reese up after his freshman season ended. The team was 2-0 in the district. Mestas ran the Villanova set and put Reese down low and let him go to work.
If Goddard is to make a deep run as they did his freshman year, they will need the 10 returning players to jell and get better as the season goes along. The key will be to win games against nemesis Lovington and Artesia — both have all-state players returning.
Reese said the team playing in the Santa Fe Classic early in the season helps them get better when the district comes around. One of the best foes he has faced was the late JB White.
The team plays two games a day for two days against 5A schools.
“JB (White) worked us,” Noah Reese said. “Those tournaments against the Albuquerque teams prepared us each season since I have been here.”
Noah Reese feels like this upcoming season, he will have to step up and be ready to help the team from a leadership standpoint and score more points if the team needs him to. Reese has a goal of trying to be New Mexico Player of the Year next year.
Noah Reese said his game has changed from his freshman year to his senior season because he is more confident in himself.
Marvin Reese said that his son’s whole high school career has been one of the stepping stones. Marvin said his son has room for growth on his 3-point shot and that it will be spot-on this season. He said they will put a lot of work into his offensive game. Marvin said Noah can finish around the rim with either hand and his mid-range game is already there.
“All of that doesn’t mean anything,” Marvin Reese said, “if we don’t have the pieces around Noah to surround him.
“We saw against Portales when they put a box-and-one against him. They double-teamed him and saw that was the recipe for success against Goddard. Everyone is going to see that and try to do that next year against Noah.”
Marvin Reese believes Goddard can be successful, and his son can be player of the year. Marvin said Noah just needs a little more support around him.
Noah Reese’s dream is to go to the University of North Carolina and play. Noah has been going to the camp since he was 9 years old.
Marvin Reese said that Noah was an ideal player for North Carolina. At the camp, no matter where Noah was, former Tar Heels head coach Roy Williams would walk into the gym and he knew Noah by name. Marvin feels that Noah is the type of player that is fundamentally sound and coachable, which is the type of player that is successful at North Carolina. With the retirement of Williams, it could change things now that Hubert Davis is the head coach.
Marvin Reese said a lot of people think it is far-fetched that a kid from New Mexico could go to North Carolina and play. For Marvin Reese, the ultimate goal is for his son to play college basketball.
Marvin Reese also said the thing that is often overlooked about his son is that he has the God-given size — but the strongest intangible about him is that he has a will to not be outworked.
Marvin has coached his son since he was 5 years old. Marvin Reese said every coach that has coached Noah at the camps has said he is the most coachable kid that they have had — and it has been a pleasure to coach him.
“The work this kid puts in,” Marvin Reese said. “And the way that he (Noah) goes out and understands his role, and as far as being dominant — he would fit right in up there with them (North Carolina). Even if he went up there as a walk-on. I know a lot of people think he can’t make it as a Tar Heel, but he is a carbon copy of Tyler Hansbrough. Noah has that desire and will to win, he is a sponge when it comes to learning.”
The Reeses have a team called New Mexico Prodigy Elite that plays travel basketball. Noah also plays for Artesia Summer Bulldogs sometimes. Marvin Reese said that playing in the summers has prepared Noah for the basketball season.
“My son cannot not succeed,” Marvin Reese said. “He cannot fail and he refuses to be outworked and he refuses to not give everything he’s got. When we travel, it’s like another day in the park.”
Goddard coach Mestas said that Noah Reese was a beast down low. He saw double teams and box-and-ones on him throughout the season. He led Goddard in scoring, rebounds and blocked shots, and led the team in 3-point shots made.
“We’re expecting big things from him next season,” Mestas said. “We want him to be one of our leaders and guide us through his senior season. I know he, along with the other seniors, wants to win district and get back to The Pit, and make a run in the playoffs. We hope to all get better this summer and during the fall offseason.”
Sports editor J.T. Keith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 304, or firstname.lastname@example.org.