Blair vanquishes the Knights winning 66-64
On Monday, Jan 8, the Blair boys’ basketball team conquered the Wheaton Knights, 66-64 earning their first win of the season. With both teams looking to secure their first win, a lot was on the line for the Blazers and the Knights.
Wheaton started off the first quarter with quick offensive plays, earning them their first few points via a three-pointer. The Blazers pushed forward without fear, bouncing back with two points of their own from junior guard Daniel Potts, earning the Blazers a spot on the scoreboard.
The game’s continued with a constant back-and-forth nature, both teams landing impressive shots throughout the game. The Blazers stood strong with the aid of freshman guard Paul Ransom’s forceful pushes through the Knights' defense and consistent free throws and impressive layups from Potts and junior forward Jaden Barrera.
After several charges and fouls called by the ref, holes in the Blair defense earned the Knights a lead, bringing the Blazers down to 11-16 at the end of the first quarter. But Hope was not lost -- The Blazers were still in the fight, nowhere close to giving up.
The beginning of the second quarter consisted of the same aggressive offense on both sides, each team fighting to gain more points on the scoreboard. Blair earned the first point of the quarter with a free throw, continuing to maintain strong defense despite Wheaton’s slight lead.
The score sat at 14-21, Knights in the lead. Not going down without a fight, the Blazers ran on a 6-point streak, catching up to the Knights and setting the score to 20-21. Ransom continued to make forceful pushes and strategic offensive plays, and the Blazers began to more securely match their opponents.
Wheaton’s call for time outs only fueled Blair’s fire, and the Blazers continued to maintain impressive offense and defense on both sides of the court. Their strong performance ended the first half 26-29.
Blair kept up their aggressive defense at the start of the second half. Ransom continued to dominate the field, rallying Blair to five unchallenged points, an assist from Junior Guard Daniel Potts, and a floater after splitting through Wheaton defense.
Despite a reasonable three point lead (35-32) by the three and a half minute mark, Wheaton did not back down, and with two seconds left on the shot clock, senior guard Samson Tesfay hit a one-handed two pointer. Shortly after, the Blazers racked up the points from free throws. Junior forward Jaeden Barrera also helped extend Blair’s lead through free throws and a contested layup to end the quarter at 49-45.
The fourth quarter started, and Blair added to their lead with a three pointer from senior guard Logan Stillerman, and two contested layups. However, by the time the quarter was halfway done, Wheaton began to make their comeback, with a three pointer and multiple lay-ups leading to a tight 64-60 Blair lead.
With 43 seconds left on the clock, and a timeout by Blair, the Blazers needed to make sure their defensive line was unyielding, while also maintaining a strong offensive front. Wheaton drew a foul from Blair and junior guard Thomas Nirayo nailed both free throws. Blair fouled out, but missed it’s free throws, with twelve seconds left on the clock. Eventually, Wheaton tied up the game with an uncontested two foot floater, six seconds left.
The pressure on both teams to get their first win of the season was high. The Blazers quickly inbounded to Potts, who sprinted up the court double-teamed to finish a final layup and win the game, 66-44.
The Blazers will take on the Einstein Titans (away) on Friday, Jan. 12 at 5:30 PM. Tickets can be found here.
Mooti Chimdi. Hi I'm Mooti (he/him). Besides writing for SCO, I like to eat and go for walks. More »
Bethel Ameha. Hi, my name is Bethel Ameha and I'm on the writing staff. I play two sports at Blair, both soccer and volleyball. I enjoy reading and listening to music. I love going out with my friends as well! More »