After a narrow victory against West Aurora in November by a score of 45-44, the varsity boys defended their home court on Friday against the Blackhawks, winning 53-40. This win raised the Wolves’ record to 24-1.
After this week’s polling, the Chicago Sun-Times has placed East basketball at 13th in the state, leaving the excitement and morale of the team at an all time high. Going into the game, Garcon said that the energy of the team was great.
“We had a tough couple of practices,” Garcon said. “But we knew the team we were up against and the energy was just really good.”
After the tip off, the Blackhawks came out strong, taking the lead at the beginning of the game.
Senior forward Patrick Robinson, one of the team’s key players, said that the Wolves started off a little slow.
“We should’ve been ahead of the game in the first or second quarter, but as long as we got the win that’s all that matters,” Robinson said.
Going into the second quarter, the Wolves were down by a score of 13-10. The Wolves defense seemed to be failing, allowing many easy baskets to fall from West Aurora.
Junior guard Ryan Johnson had to admit that the team’s defense could use some work.
“Really we could work on our zone defense,” Johnson said. “We let them get to the net pretty easily, they got good shots.”
Going into half, the Wolves regained the lead.
The narrative didn’t change for the majority of the second half, as the Wolves and Blackhawks stayed neck and neck. The varsity boys finally gained a substantial lead near the end of the third quarter. Going into the fourth, the Wolves were up by 5 points.
Head coach Ryan Velasquez recognized the team for their ability to pick up the defense in the second half.
“We were able to string together some stops on the defensive end in the second half,” Velasquez said.
The Wolves widened this lead in the fourth quarter, ending the game with a final score of 40-53.
It is clear that this team is going places. With a great record, and being ranked 13th in the state, a state championship is a very real possibility for the varsity Wolves.
Garcon said that there are some things the team could work on, but a state championship is a very real possibility for them.
“Defensively we know what we are capable of,” Garcon said. “We are a state championship team, so we have to work on our defense and communicate on the court.”
It is great to see a team representing East do so well, and the boys have caught the attention of the state. Head Coach Ryan Velasquez said that he is looking forward to seeing the team continue to grow and perform at a championship level.
“It’s nice to see the team work together and have success, we want to get better every day,” Velasquez said.
The Wolves play their next game at home against Minooka on Tuesday, where they will seek to gather their 25th win of the season.
Jackson Wezeman is a staff writer for Oswego East High School’s online news magazine the Howl