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Your World. Your Stories. Everyday.


Heroics shine through in varsity basketball double-header

Senior guard James Parker grabs his own miss and lays it in to win the game
Xavier Delgado
Senior guard James Parker grabs his own miss and lays it in to win the game

The boys’ and girls’ varsity basketball teams dazzled home fans in their rare double-header against DeKalb Barbs last Friday. The boys won a thrilling 44-42 battle and the girls suffered a hard-fought 31-51 defeat. The event not only gave players the unique opportunity to showcase their skills on the court but also to share appreciation for the staff members who have made a difference in their lives. 

The boy’s varsity basketball game kicked the night off in a roller-coaster fashion. The game was a back-and-forth, though it once seemed like DeKalb would run away with it.

At first, the Barbs had all of control and momentum, leading 26-22 at the half and padding their advantage to as much as six to begin the fourth quarter.

After a much-needed run to tie the game, the Mustangs needed one last shot to put the game away.

A nervous hush came over the crowd as the game was tied 42-42 with more than 40 seconds left. Senior guard James Parker drained the clock and waited to attack, faking a handoff to Senior Will Ashford on the left wing before cutting his way through the lane with a right-handed dribble. In a desperate attempt to get to the rim, a defender goes crashing to the ground, and Parker sends a floater towards the backboard. Even after the first attempt began to bound away, he fought hard to secure the offensive rebound, hitting on a putback layup to take a two point lead with 2.5 seconds remaining. DeKalb would have an attempt to extend the game, but turned it over, securing the Mustang’s 44-42 victory.

Parker led all scorers with 17 points for the victorious Mustangs, with none being bigger than the two he scored in the game’s final moments.

While the girls’ varsity team battled hard, ultimately they couldn’t find the same magic as the boys’ team, suffering a 51-31 defeat. 

The Mustangs had a hard time overcoming the Barbs’ suffocating defense, which made its mark on the game from the beginning.

While a strong second quarter knocked the margin from nine to seven, the Barbs were just too much to overcome, defeating the Mustangs by 20 points.

But all was not lost for the girls, as they still got the opportunity to honor some heroes of their own. In a ceremony between the two games, the team was able to show their appreciation for the most impactful staff members in their lives.

One of these staff members, English teacher Sean McNicholas, is incredibly proud that his students feel positively influenced by his class.

“I was invited to the basketball game by a few of my former students [seniors] Lucy [Burke] and Jessica [Loge] and one of my current students Sreehi [Duggirala],” McNicholas said. “For them to even think about me after the class is over is a good feeling for sure.”

These selected staff members had the opportunity to take a photo with the students that honored them, with some also taking their best attempts at draining a halfcourt shot. Still, McNicholas was more than happy to leave the basketball side up to the teams.

“I always want to see my students in a different setting than just the classroom, and this event gave me the opportunity to see many of my students play ball,” McNicholas said. 

Still fresh in the season, the boys sit at 4-2 (1-0 in conference) and the girls at 1-5 (0-2 in conference). Both varsity teams will look for a big conference win against talented Waubonsie Valley teams this week, with the girls hosting the Warriors on Thursday and the boys going on the road Friday.

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About the Contributors
Charlie Davidson
Charlie is on staff for the first time as a sports writer and he is a senior at Metea Valley. He loves following Chicago sports and spending time with family. When not cram studying or writing his next story, he is probably off tracking seven different games at once and questioning each coach’s decisions.
Xavier Delgado
Xavier Delgado is in his only year on staff and his final year at Metea Valley. He spends his time producing and listening to music while paying attention to football. He also enjoys family time.

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  • S

    ShawnDec 8, 2023 at 12:01 pm

    What a DYNAMIC article! Really made me feel like I was watching the game!

  • A

    Aadit BDec 8, 2023 at 11:59 am

    Phenomenal article again! Keep up the great work!