Last year, West Chester East play a hard-fought game against Sun Valley High School in the District One 5A Championship. They suffered a tough loss, but, now Seniors, Andrew Carr, and Tym Richardson vowed they and the team would be back for revenge.
Fast forward to Saturday afternoon, the Vikings were set to play to Penn Wood in the championship game. Nothing but determination showed on their faces as they warmed up and locked in. Penn Wood may have been hungry for an upset, but West Chester East was hungry for redemption.
Defense, missed shots, and butterflies were the main themes of the first quarter. Both teams seemed too tense to start out the game because shots that normally would fall were either rimming out or coming up short.
When the second quarter rolled around, both teams starting turning up the energy and the offense. Shamir Baynes hit a couple of big shots for Penn Wood to keep them neck and neck through the first half. Andrew Carr, however, started to really lock in as well. He scored nine of his 22 right before the halftime buzzer.
The third quarter is where the Vikings did their most damage. Big third quarters have been an ongoing theme throughout the whole season for West Chester East. They outscored Penn Wood 23-9 and never looked back after that. Mike Dedda and Kieran Hefferan both hit a pair of triples on top of Jack Kushner scoring a trio of tough buckets under the basket.
Once the buzzer sounded and the fourth quarter started, it was all but over. Penn Wood showed tiny signs of life here and there, but the Vikings always kept them at bay with timely buckets. While Carr led the team in scoring, it was a total team effort from wire to wire and it was shown in the 67-43 final score.
Jerry Flynn didn’t have the same game he was accustomed to this postseason, finishing with only eight points. Baynes put up 15 though while Abdullah Dublin chipped in with nine.
The next step, for both teams, is the state championships. Penn Wood, after this tough loss, could surprise some good teams. It wouldn’t be surprising if they pull off another upset or two as they became known for it throughout all but this one game in districts.
This very convincing districts run by West Chester East gives a lot of hope for what could be in the state tournament. None of the games they played were really all that close, and when it mattered most in the championship, they received contributions from everyone on the floor. Carr and Richardson will still definitely be the focal points, but when everyone is firing on all cylinders, this is a very difficult team to beat.