Coming into this season, everyone surrounding West Chester East could feel something special brewing. Senior duo Andrew Carr and Tym Richardson were ready to avenge their district finals loss from last year. That all started with dominating the regular season. Then, on to the Ches-Mont playoffs.
After dispatching of rival Rustin high school, the Vikings were tasked with Unionville high school. A very calm and collected team that can light it up from outside. Hollinger Fieldhouse was packed to the brim for an exciting matchup. Both student sections were going crazy right from the start.
While the first quarter, and even the whole first half, was evenly matched between the teams, Carr and Richardson didn’t seem to even be bothered. That fearlessness and hunger from the senior duo were shown as soon as the second half began.
Carr started getting more and more aggressive. When he received the ball in the post, it was nothing but barbeque chicken. With a flurry of footwork and a well-timed pump fake here and there, Carr was getting anything he wanted. Unionville’s defense seemed more concerned about trying not to foul than they were trying to actually alter his shot.
A big reason East started to distance themselves after just a two-point lead at halftime was the defense. They started playing a 1-3-1 with Carr in the middle and that completely shut down Unionville’s inside game.
However, that didn’t mean Unionville was completely down and out. Sean Neylon and Logan Shanahan both were hot from three. They hit four and three treys respectively.
Every time it seemed like Unionville could make a run, East had an answer. Richardson started to notice that he could drive right past his defender almost every time. They started to force him to go left, and he still got to the spots he wanted and got a bucket when it mattered most.
East held on for an eight-point win and they won the Ches-Mont title for the first time in school history. This was their first appearance in the championship game since 1999 as well.
Their work and the seniors’ dreams don’t just end here. Last season, they lost in the District 1 5A finals against Sun Valley. So it’s only fitting that their first matchup in the district playoffs this year is none other than Sun Valley. The Vikings at 22-2 are enjoying a historic season, and this Ches-Mont crown is just another check on their list of things they want to accomplish. Carr and Richardson are going to try and go out with a bang!
Some video highlights of the game via Basketball Society’s Evan Anderson: