Wildcats defeat Magruder in fourth quarter


Photo courtesy Sanir Byanjankar

Senior Dawson Carr lays the ball over Magruder’s post player. This winning streak has given the team more confidence for the rest of the season.

On Jan. 17 the boys’ basketball team faced Magruder High School (8-3) at home. The game against the Colonels, which featured many lead changes, had everyone on the edge of their seats.

The Colonels came out exceptionally strong in the first quarter, while the Wildcats were unable to score in the first four minutes. Turnovers and lack of patience hurt the Wildcats.

The Wildcats stuck to their man-to-man defense throughout the whole game. Magruder played a 2-3 defense, as they tried to keep WJ out of the paint.

But with three minutes left in the first quarter, WJ started their press and forced Magruder to turn over the ball. Senior Dawson Carr had a big quarter on offensive and defensive. With only minutes left the Wildcats started racking up quick points. The quarter ended with WJ only three points down, 16-13.

One of the Wildcats’ weaknesses is getting the offensive board which showed up in the second quarter. The Colonels started applying pressure. They pressed and fell back into their 2-3.

With thirty seconds left in the quarter, senior Dejohn Blunt got fouled attempting a three, and calmly made all three free throws. Unfortunately, Magruder hit a three with ten seconds left. The basket left WJ three points down at the end of the quarter, 29-26.

The heavily contested game came down to who wanted it more entering the second half.

In the first half of the third quarter, both teams struggled to put up points. The quarter intensified during the last three minutes. The Wildcats started playing their full-court man-to-man press, which allowed them to get some quick buckets and make the Colonels turn over the ball. Magruder was able to hit some open threes to keep them in the game.

Unlike many of our games this year, we were finally able to move the ball around more than usual and play some team basketball. We are going to have to get better with closing out games though.

— Ben Kim

Everything that the Wildcats had been struggling with, they corrected in the fourth quarter. On offense, WJ dominated the offensive boards and protected their paint well on defense. Ultimately, the Wildcats showed how much they wanted it and pulled out the win, 60-57.

“We were able to feed off the energy the 2nd group brought and take that with us throughout the entire game. We got back to what we are good at and that ultimately played in our favor towards the end,” senior Christion Wright said.

Senior Dejohn Blunt finished the game with an impressive 30 points.
The Wildcats play BCC tonight and hope to build on their winning streak.