Basketball team wins conference title

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Jillian Marquard

Jillian Marquard

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Jillian Marquard and Sarah Walsh

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The Chargers’ conference championship basketball game versus the Springfield Hawks on Friday, February 29 can’t be simply described as a victory, but rather an annihilation. The boys walked away with an 83-58 victory and the conference title.

Going into the game, Springfield was ranked first in the Valley Conference; by winning last Friday’s game, the Chargers took the lead in the conference standings and greatly increased their chances at securing their position. “We had to beat them to get a two game cushion,” said assistant coach Jeff Williams. With their win against Shelbyville on Monday, February 3, the Chargers successfully clinched the conference title.

Despite the final score, Charger fans may have been a little concerned within the first four minutes of the game, when their team dropped behind by eleven points: Springfield hit some early shots…they were playing well, and we were just playing okay,” said assistant coach Williams.

The Chargers were giving up a number of easy shots from inside the paint, and they had continual problems shutting down Springfield’s Michael Jordan Jr., even after staging a comeback. “He was the main person we needed to stop,” said senior captain Thomas Jensen. The Chargers allowed six crowd-pleasing dunks, all made by Springfield star Jordan, throughout the course of the game.

However, after a quick time-out with two minutes to go in the first half, the Chargers turned the game around, ending the first half with a lead of 53-42. “We thought we had to play better of course,” said junior Peter Dahl.

The team made some minor changes to their defense in order to shut down Springfield under the basket. “We started playing a zone defense,” said Jensen. “That helped a lot.”

The team didn’t only change the defensive set-up, but the mentality as well; shutting down Jordan became a priority. “Defensively we made sure we knew where Jordan was at,” said Williams. The Chargers started the second half with the same explosive energy and a 10-0 run.

The Chargers peaked with an astounding 28 point lead over Springfield, at which point the student fan section, completely garnished in black for the “black-out,” began numerous chants, uncontested by the sullen Springfield fans. “It’s always good to see a lot of fans there,” said Jensen.

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