Boys basketball defends their state title for second year


Wyatt Lehti

Junior guard Barron Silsby (Left), senior guard Ben Egbo (Middle left), junior Noah Davis (Middle right), and junior guard Benett Kaup celebrate their state championship. The team took the title home for the second year in a row.

For the second year in a row, boys basketball has gone back to back as the open division AIA basketball champions. They worked through this throughout the entire season and have achieved the end goal they desired.

While it is true that they have been moving towards this all season, throughout the playoffs the team did not get very far ahead of themselves, trying to take it one game at a time. Junior guard Barron Silsby said, “We’re just taking it one day at a time.”

Sophomore point guard Dominic Avalos also touched on that point as well. The team thought it was important to not only take it one game at a time but also to not forget the goal. Avalos said they need to “Win [and] stay humble.”

In terms of specifics, the team is preparing for their opponents. They have been watching film on their opponents, also known as scouting. Varsity boys basketball coach Sam Duane made this clear, saying, “We worked hard on our scout.” 

Avalos commented on this as well; he said, “We’re trying to find out their plays, and we’ll just run their plays while we’re preparing for them.” The largest aspect of practice for the playoff and championship games has been preparing for the next team they play, and only the next team they will play.

Despite the one game at a time mentality, there is still confidence all around. Silsby is confident in the ability of the team, backing it up by saying, “Of course [we can win].” Duane shared, “We feel confident…we feel good inside.” The confidence is felt everywhere, all throughout the team.

Working towards the end goal through the whole season, boys basketball has finally got what they were looking for, and have reigned victorious once again. The game took place on Sat., Mar. 4, against Sunnyslope High School.

After the time expired, the whole team immediately shot into celebration, dancing and running around, followed by hundreds of loud shouts from their side of the crowd. People in the student section were screaming like madmen, and everyone was taking in all the emotions. Following the players were people from major corporations, hoping to get news from the players.

Junior guard Benett Kaup was living in the moment for this. He said, “It feels good to finally reach the goal we set in the beginning.” Not only Kaup but all the other players were living in the moment, and it was a truly special experience. 

It has been another historic season for boys basketball, almost going undefeated, with only one loss. Winning the state championship for the second year in a row was the best imaginable outcome for the team, and they will aim to do the same next year.