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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 Intense Game Against Manor 69-60

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  • Walker Hensley ’24 rises over a defender for a floating bucket. Hensley made his living in the paint throughout the game and held for rebounds off of missed shots.

  • Crossing over Thomas Burke ’24 jukes out of a defender’s hold. Determined, Burke drove to the basket for a layup, rose over a Manor defender and threw down a basket.

  • Frustrated, Suley Shah ’24 walks off the court. Shah was ejected from play for receiving a technical foul after a call didn’t go his way. “He got put out on the heater,” Indy Mcbrearty ’25 said.

  • Scanning the floor, Sumner Holland waits patiently for an opening to pass the ball. Holland and the rest of the player’s on the court maneuvered through their inbound progressions to make space for a potential inbound basket.

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Despite coming into the night well above a losing record at 16-8, Varsity basketball took the court on Tuesday, Jan. 17 sitting in sixth in district standings. The Warriors looked to beat the Manor Mustangs who were also coming into the night middle of the table in fifth place in a close battle for position. Although the game went back and forth through the entire game, injuries and fouls plagued the Warriors as they found themselves in a late-game hole they couldn’t climb out of, losing 69-60.

“It was a disappointing game for us,” Indy McBrearty ‘25 said. “We had no energy or will coming out so in the end we came out flat and the results showed for themselves.”

Following the tip-off the game started slow with Westwood draining 40 seconds off of the clock on their first possession before Captain Ryan Swanson ‘24 rose to the rim, scoring the opening basket of the night. Unfortunately this wasn’t a sign for the game to come, as both teams began to turn it up the tempo of the game Manor began to pull away and gain a lead on the Warriors by capitalizing on Westwood’s turnovers and bad passes. With just thirty seconds left in the quarter Co-Captain Suleyman Shah ‘24 took to the backboard for the layup, coming down hard with a foul whistle to show for it. Shah’s and-one brought the Warriors back to life, bringing the quarter to a close 16-11.

Westwood carried their momentum into the second quarter nabbing the lead 18-17. This didn’t last long however as manor found their footing, and didn’t let up off the gas as the Warriors struggled to keep up with the fast-paced Mustang offense. Luckily Westwood found life near the end of the half with more late-quarter heroics from Shah, knocking down a three, and bringing the Warriors within two to end the first half 31-29.

Both teams caught their breath as the Sundanders gave the spectators entertainment during the half, but soon it was back to the court for the Warriors. However, much to the dismay of the Westwood fans and players alike, Swanson appeared from the locker room in crutches and an ankle brace, after sustaining an injury during the first half.

“We’re gonna miss [Swanson],” McBrearty said. “Hopefully he will be back soon.”

Taking to the court the Swanson-less, the Warriors hoped to grab a lead and sustain it, something they were unable to do in the first half. Following through with that plan, Thomas Burke ‘24 opened the scoring with a layup tying the score at 31 all. Following a back and forth sequence the Warriors found themselves ahead 38-37 with a Burke free throw. Once again the game remained back and forth with Burke and McBrearty trading blows with the Mustangs. Despite their efforts Manor was able to grow their lead slightly by the end of the quarter, leading 47-42.But the Warriors still remained in the game, and hoped to grab the win in the fourth.

“We were just terrible on defense,” Burke said. “We couldn’t stop them in transition or anything. They got whatever shot they wanted, and didn’t miss a shot just because we didn’t play any defense…At the end of the day we just should have played better.”

Westwood came into the quarter flat, allowing Manor to go on a 11-0 run. Finding themselves down 12 the Warriors’ woes only continued from there with Shah being called for a technical foul, and forced out of the game with 6:25 left in the final quarter. Westwood, now without their two captains, their two biggest scoring threats, They looked to close the double digit gap, and make a run for the game. Although coming within five points of the Mustangs on multiple occasions throughout the quarter, the Warriors were unable to hold Manor’s offense, and without their two leading scorers, catching up was not such an easy task. With 20 seconds left in the game the Mustangs didn’t let up and scored to increase their lead to nine, and solidify their win 69-60.

“I love watching my teammates,” Shah said. “But in the end it was on me, it was my bad, I should’ve played better, but what happened happened.”

The Warriors will take to the court again on Friday, Jan. 19, to face the Vandegrift Vipers on the Vipers home court.

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About the Contributor
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.

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