The Puma boys basketball team’s season came to an end on the floor of Wells Fargo Arena when a 10 point loss to the Pinnacle Pioneers ended the team’s hopes of winning a state title.
After an opening round playoff win over Skyline and a 17 point victory over Mountain Pointe that set up the semifinal matchup with Pinnacle. The Pumas were able to get within four points against the Pioneers but the number one team in the state pulled away late and punched their ticket to the state championship game.
Before the playoff loss to Pinnacle, the Pumas were riding a seven game win streak with wins over divisional rivals Basha, Chandler and a triple overtime win over Brophy College Prep.
The team ended the regular season boasting a 17-9 (5-3) record with Jalen Williams leading the way on offense and multiple underclassman stepping up and playing big roles as well.
However the Pumas will have to say goodbye to some key starters. Senior guard Jalen Williams will be attending and playing basketball Santa Clara University while senior forward Kyle Patterson will be attending Air Force. Seniors Bauer Bongard, Andrew Morrill, and Miles Houston also will be apart of this graduating class that played a major role in the success of this year’s team.
Freshman forward Dylan Anderson and sophomore guard Christian Tucker led the way for the underclassman with both playing meaningful minutes down the stretch. Anderson was a starter the throughout the season while Tucker saw important minutes off the bench.
With eight seniors walking in May, the foundation of next years team seems to be on junior Evan Skeoch as well as the aforementioned underclassman.
A team that began the season as a group of returning freshmen and a couple upperclassman recently ended that same season with a monumental record of 18 wins and 9 losses. The girls’ basketball team wrapped up their successful year with head coach Andrew Curtis and despite being beat in the quarterfinals, the girls seemed pretty excited for the future.
The season’s accomplishments?
The team has gotten “stronger, faster, [and] more aggressive,” according to Tatyanna Clayburne, the sophomore point guard on the team.
And the girls have stats to back it up.
The team beat records for the most points and assists per single match, with a game average of 59 points and 14 assists.
Sophomore shooting guard Shayla O’Neil commented on the growth, saying that the team has had “…more ball movement and more team play than last year.”
Despite the great amount of rise and improvement the team has seen, they realize that there is still work to be done.
The girls plan to work on building their defense next year. They averaged about 20 defensive rebounds, 12 steals, and 2 blocks per game this season. O’Neil touched on this, saying “We’ve gotten more aggressive but we still have a lot to work on.”
The girls will get to look back on an extremely successful year and look forward to another lucrative 2019-2020 season with 14 returning players.