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The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

Varsity Basketball Loses Opener to Johnson 61-55

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  • Indy McBrearty ’25 goes up for a layup during the first half of the game. McBrearty is a started as a guard for the warriors varsity for the first team this year.

  • Freshman Marquis Murry dribbles up the court. Murry is the only freshman to make the boy’s varsity basketball team.

  • Indy McBrearty ’25 and John McNair ’26 celebrate a three point shot made by McNair. He was also fouled during this shot and attempted a free throw.

  • Senior Suley Shah dribbles past Buda Johnson’s defense. Shah is the starting small forward for the warriors this year.

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On Friday, Nov. 10, varsity basketball opened their season taking on the Johnson Jaguars in what became a true back-and-forth fight between two teams coming off of playoff seasons the year prior. Despite the best efforts of the Warriors, a late fourth quarter surge from the Jaguars sealed an opening day loss for Westwood.

“We had a couple of different halves happen there,” Head Coach Brad Hastings said. “ We got down by 10 or 11 at halftime and I was happy with the way that we made some adjustments, but also just kind of showed our mentality in the locker room and that came back on the court.”

Starting the game with a bang Thomas Burke ‘24 hit a pull up jumpshot over a Johnson defender following an opening possession steal by the Warriors. After the Jaguars answered right back with a three pointer, Ryan Swanson ‘24 hit two straight shots to keep the Warriors level. The period continued with both teams efficiently scoring the ball, with Swanson, Burke, and Suley Shah ‘23 combining to keep the Warriors in the lead as the clock hit zero 18-14.

Johnson came out of the break firing, opening the second period with a three pointer on their first possession. Although Indiana McBrearty ‘25 put up a shot of his own to keep the Jaguars at bay, Johnson quickly took the lead after an and-one and a jump shot at 22-20. That was only the beginning for the Jags who would go on a 13-0 run before Westwood would score another point. Although their defensive woes were taken care of, their slow offensive performance continued, only able to score twice before halftime, heading into the locker room down double digits 35-24.

Although down big at half time there was a renewed sense of life coming out of the half with Shah, Swanson, and Burke combining for 19 points in six minutes coupled with a press defensive set that worked effectively against the Jaguars, allowing the Warriors to take the lead with two minutes left in the half. It was short lived however, as Johnson quickly took it back, and ran up the score before the end of the third period, not allowing Westwood’s big three to score another bucket, and going 45-39.

“I just felt like we had to get back into the game,” McBrearty said. “I mean I feel like we needed a spark so II felt that I just needed to get to the rim, and score.”

Tension was high with both student sections rowdy and on their feet to start the fourth and final period. Westwood was on the ropes down six, and needed life from their bench to keep their hopes of winning alive. They got just that from John McNair ‘26, who maneuvered his way to the corner rising to hit a three pointer and-one, and giving the Warriors the lead 49-48 with just 4:16 remaining on the clock.

“We had a couple of big shots,” Burke said. “McNair hitting a three pointer and one really got the crowd going, got the students section hyped.”

Following the shot, McBrearty and Burke gave their everything, knocking down shot after shot to keep their lead, and outpace the Jaguars, but a series of missed shots, and fouls by the Warriors led to a two minute 5-0 run for the Jags, securing their victory 61-55.

“Well, we lost but it’s a tough team,” Burke said. “They’re gonna be a playoff team that went deep in the playoffs last year. I think we have a long way to go but it’s a good place to start.”

The Warriors will return to the court Tuesday, Nov. 14, taking on Cedar Park in game two of their non-district competition.


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Sawyer Grimaldi
Sawyer Grimaldi, Sports Editor
Class of 2025 Hi everyone! Coming from a family of writers and English majors I have always been keen on writing and reporting! I started in middle school and haven’t looked back since. Other things I enjoy are playing sports of all kinds, playing video games with my friends, traveling around the world, and playing with my dog. Something interesting about me is that I like to collect shoes and sports jerseys.
Ellen Chuo
Ellen Chuo, Photo Editor
Class of 2024 This is my second year working on Student Press, and I'm so excited to be part of the team. When I'm not at school, I enjoy playing guitar, hanging out with friends, and sleeping. I love to bake, especially when I should be doing homework or studying for a test. I also love hiking, camping, and taking pictures of nature.

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