Varsity Boys’ Basketball Slays Cypress Lakes Spartans 47-43 in Intense Playoff Showdown

By Hayden Swanson, Managing Editor

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  • Jumping, Santi Campos '20 shoots a layup. The layup brought the Warriors within four 24-20.

    Photo By Ishika Samant

  • A border collie catches a frisbee during the halftime performance. The dogs were part of Flying Disk Dogs of Austin and did high energy tricks with music.

    Photo By Ishika Samant

  • Christian Robinson '20 catches a rebound. The Warriors had great defense and crashed the boards after halftime with a 10-0 run.

    Photo By Ishika Samant

  • Brandon Parks '20 passes the ball to a teammate. The ball was dished back to Parks where he shot a 3-pointer.

    Photo By Ishika Samant

  • Carson King '22 dribbles the ball into the paint. King is the tallest member on the team and plays center.

    Photo By Ishika Samant

  • Brandon Parks '20 jumps to catch a rebound. Parks was unable to get a hold of the ball and the Spartans claimed possession of the ball.

    Photo By Ishika Samant

  • Zach Engels '22 and a defensive player fight for the rebound. Engels got the rebound and the Warriors were able to score a 3-pointer

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The varsity boys’ basketball team overcame the Cypress Lakes High School Spartans in a brutal, down-to-the-wire match during the playoffs. This is the second time ever that the Warriors hosted a playoff game, and despite a very rough start, they defended their home court 47-43.

Right off the bat, the Warriors were overwhelmed by the Spartans, as they gained a lead of four points. Point guard Brandon Parks ‘20 shot a 2-pointer in an attempt to catch up, but this effort was immediately matched by some free throws from the Spartans. The audience erupted with applause when power forward Christian Robinson ‘20 made a 2-pointer, but the celebration didn’t last long when once again the Spartans scored a 2-pointer, followed by a free throw and a 3-pointer. Parks stepped up and tried to catch up again with a 2-pointer followed immediately by a 3-pointer, which electrified the audience once again. The Spartans were resilient, however, and saw to it that the Warriors wouldn’t score again for the rest of the quarter, making two 2-pointers and four free throws along the way. Thus, the first quarter came to an end with the Spartans far in the lead 19-11.

With the same aggression from the previous quarter, Parks came out swinging and scored a 2-pointer at the start of the second quarter. More free throws from the Spartans kept them far in the lead, but a 3-pointer from small forward Zach Engels ‘22 and a 2-pointer from shooting guard Santi Campos ‘20 kept the Warriors from falling further behind. The Spartans also kept up their intensity from the first quarter, maintaining their lead with an assortment of 2-pointers and free throws. Campos and Engels both scored again, but this was still not enough to overtake their opponents, and the first half of the game closed with the Spartans even further in the lead 33-21.

“Once we got out, we knew we had to hit some shots to get back in,” Parks said. “And that’s all we did.”

The third quarter saw the Warriors refusing to accept defeat; and Robinson, Campos, Engels, and Parks all worked together to finally catch up to the Spartans, with a plethora of free throws from Campos, a 2-pointer from Parks, a 3-pointer from Engels, and finally a bucket from Campos that officially put them in the lead. The Spartans weren’t going to go down so easily, however, and they quickly stole the lead back with a free throw and a 3-pointer. A free throw from Robinson and a 2-pointer from Engels tied the two teams up, but ultimately the Spartans were able to score just a little more and finish the third quarter ahead again with a score of 40-37.

Engels and Campos both contributed 2-pointers that bumped the Warriors back into the lead at the start of the fourth quarter. Robinson shot another 2-pointer that reinforced this lead, but free throws from the Spartans tied the score up once again. A mere three minutes remained on the clock, and tensions were incredibly high on both sides. The tie was broken when SF Anish Maddipoti ‘20 scored a 2-pointer that brought along with it an abundance of cheers. Parks and Engels both shot free throws that kept the ball out of the hands of the enemy and increased the margin, and a little bit of stalling allowed the Warriors to secure the victory 47-43. 

“At halftime, we decided we were not gonna lose this playoff game,” Maddipoti said. “It could’ve been our last game, so we decided to turn it around. We stepped up the intensity, and our defense stepped up, so we won the game because of our defense. Shout out to everyone on our team; they never quit.”

The Warriors will continue their playoff journey when they face off against the Dekaney Wildcats on Friday, Feb 28.