Both the boys’ and girls’ varsity basketball teams won the conference championship at home on Saturday, Feb. 22. The boys beat the Page Pirates and the girls beat their rival, the Ragsdale Tigers–the same ending match-ups at the HAECO Invitational Tournament in December.
The girls began the night with a handled win against the Tigers with a score of 60-48. After their previous loss to Ragsdale, the Vikings came out strong with a press and accurate shots. Before the game, head coach Haley Hackett emphasized the mistakes of the previous match-up to ensure her first conference tournament championship as coach.
“We really needed to work on guarding dribble penetration and making sure that we were handling screens well,” junior Shaena Riddles.
The team needed to limit turnovers and fouls, and most importantly needed to stop Ragsdale’s drives off of screens.
“We had a plan to go over and under the screens and assignments for certain people and we put in new offenses that worked,” senior Thalia Carter said.
Shots also fell for the Vikings even though senior Reagan Kargo was heavily guarded. Riddles’ five threes of her 17 total points was a major part of the Northwest win. Kargo scored 11 points and Carter scored 15. Junior Jadyn Murray also stepped up with crucial rebounds and put-backs in her minutes.
The girls were up by 25 points near the second half proving their dominance in the Metro 4A conference. Although there was a 16 point turnaround by the Tigers in the fourth quarter, they still pulled off a third win against them.
“Ragsdale and the rest of the conference don’t show us very much respect and they think that they’re better than us so it’s just really nice to prove them wrong,” Riddles said.
Their playoff season begins on Thursday after a by on Tuesday’s first round. They will play Hopewell and are aiming high for another state championship.
“We’ll have a decent bracket after winning tonight’s game and we’re confident that we can get a state championship,” Riddles said.
The Varsity boys beat the Page Pirates in the conference tournament championship 74-60. Both teams came out hard with energy and grit.
The first quarter started off tight with a 17-18 Pirate lead.
“I didn’t have to say a lot (after the first quarter),” head coach Lee Reavis said. “We have seven seniors and they’ve done an outstanding job in the second half of the season of taking ownership.”
Seniors Chris Hampton and Robbie Boulton suggested a full court trapping defense that led them to a blowout quarter against the Pirates.
“It gave us confidence and we kept it rolling from there,” senior Dean Reiber said.
High scorers were Reiber with 32 points and Hampton with 21 and 10 rebounds. Boulton had 5 points, 5 assists and 5 rebounds and senior
Brandon Thomas had 4 points and 7 assists.
“I thought both teams competed really hard, and the difference in the game was the second quarter–we had an 18-6 (point) quarter–we did an outstanding job,” Reavis said.
The boys will also play Thursday for the second round of state playoffs against West Charlotte high school. The team is looking forward to a good post-season.
“If we play hard and play well together, a lot of positive things are going to happen,” Reavis said.