The oohs and ahhs from the crowd are nothing new for RaHeim Moss.
The Springfield High School senior has been throwing down monster dunks for the last four years — and the fans’ reaction never gets old.
“I really like attacking the rim and getting great dunks,” he said.
The 6-foot-4 high flyer is averaging team-high 17.7 points and 7.7 rebounds for the Wildcats. He also leads the team with a 56.5 field goal percentage, the majority of which come from transition dunks and layups created by the Wildcats’ pressure defense.
The highlight-reel, made-for-social media dunks are coming virtually every game. He knows he has his teammates to thank for that, Moss said.
“Without them creating turnovers and getting good ball pressure, I wouldn’t be able to get these dunks,” he said.
Moss is also defending at a high level, which helps him create dunk opportunities that energize the crowd, Wildcats coach Isaiah Carson said.
“He’s trying to get out in transition and he’s also being tough defending in the halfcourt,” he said. “He’s mixing it up, defending at a high level and converting on the other end. … He’s at the top of that press and he’s got good energy. He’s getting rewarded for it.”
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Earlier this season, a 10-second clip of Moss’ behind-the-back, two-handed slam against Centerville was shared nationally and viewed more than 18,000 times on Twitter.
At last weekend’s Flyin’ to the Hoop showcase against California’s Prolific Prep Academy, Moss found himself on a breakaway and finished with a two-handed cradle jam. The video has more than 3,000 views on Twitter.
“I got the cradle down,” he said. “That’s my favorite dunk. I just don’t like to do it too often.”
The cradle jam has been a staple of Moss’ dunks over the years, Carson said.
“He’s been doing that,” he said. “We’re used to that. He’s very creative and he’s not afraid to try anything.”
Sometimes, he gets a little too creative, Carson said.
“There’s been some dunks he’s tried and it’s like: ‘No, you gotta come sit next to me’,” he said.
A few weeks ago, Moss unsuccessfully attempted a between the legs, off the backboard dunk and found himself sitting next to his coach.
“The thing is, I’ve seen him do it,” Carson said, “but if you’re going to do it, do it. We can’t have that bite us in a close game.”
Moss has a been a staple in the Wildcats’ rotation since his freshman year, but has a few more goals left to accomplish. Springfield is 9-4 and 7-0 in the Greater Western Ohio Conference National East Division. The Wildcats travel to Springboro on Friday night and top-ranked Moeller on Saturday.
“We want to be GWOC champs at the end of the year and we want to get that state ring,” Moss said. “We’ve got to be disciplined and work hard every day in practice.”
Moss has multiple offers for both football and basketball, but is still undecided where or what sport he’ll play next season. National signing day is Feb. 6.
“It’s coming up” Moss said. “I may make my decision then, but if not, it will be a little bit after that. It’s coming soon. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do.”
Until then, Moss hopes to get the crowd to erupt in Springfield a few more times.
“I love playing for Springfield,” Moss said. “I was just talking about it with my friends the other day. It’s just crazy how we’re up here playing where our close friends and close cousins used to play back in the day. It’s a great feeling to know you’re playing at the varsity level in front of these fans.”