Hoops for Hope (Q Street on the line)

West looks to defend their street title in a game of charity


Photo courtesy of Ellen Burling

Junior Domm Humm lines up at the free throw line, looking to close the gap. Humm finished with 17 points, the only Wildcat to score over 10 that night.

Cody Bennett, Sports Director | Exectuitive Striv Producer

On Friday, Jan. 10th, the Battle of Q Street took place for the first time during basketball season. A little backing for the event was the annual “Hoops for Hope” game, which allowed students to purchase T-shirts and beads for $10 and $1 respectively. All proceeds go to the American Cancer Society to learn and study cancer.

As the game began, some players really had to stand out for their team to take home the win. For Millard South, senior Trevor Albert would have to be an unstoppable threat in the paint and around the arc. Use all of the 6’ 9” height he has to crash the glass and get the boards. Another X-factor for South are the Stenger brothers. The junior point guard, Blake Stenger had to call the correct formations against the Millard West zone defense, as well as look for open lanes and open men. Sophomore Gage Stenger averages over 10 points per game as well as 5 rebounds per game.
Millard West has the same X-factors besides the loss of senior Tristan Gomes in the off season. Junior Domm Humm has really proved his capabilities on the court, allowing for open lanes and shots for his teammates, he’s also not afraid to take a shot himself. Senior Zach Olson needed to use his height in the paint, especially against Albert, and knock down open shots in the paint and on the wings. 

Tip off at Millard South started at 7:15, and the possession goes to Millard West. Wildcats get the first two points of the game due to a shooting foul from South, allowing Humm to go to the line and shoot two. The Patriots picked apart the zone defense of the Wildcats halfway through the first quarter, senior Tre Mungin shot a wide open corner three for the lead against the Wildcats 7-4. A pair of free throws from Blake Stenger ended the first quarter as the Patriots were up against the Cats 15-10.

The Patriots kept up the pressure and didn’t let off the gas. Every time the Cats would score, the Patriots would respond right back with their own points. Blake Stenger and his offense were explosive this quarter going on a 6-2 run for the last half of the second quarter. Millard South led Millard West 25-19 at halftime.

Millard South came out of the locker room ready to put this game to rest, the Wildcats looking to resurrect it, a quick 6-0 run by South put them up 38-23 halfway through the 3rd quarter, but a quick answer from the Wildcats cut the lead to 38-29. At the end of the 3rd quarter, the Patriots increased their lead to 42-31, only eight minutes for the Wildcats to claw back into this one.

A great sign, junior Ryan Larsen opens the 4th with a close range off stride 3 pointer, cutting the lead down to eight. Junior Evan Meyersick also decided to join in on the fun and does the signature side to side swing and layup into the basket and scored to cut the lead down to six. A quick 5-0 run gave new life to Wildcats, a great paint play from Humm cut the lead even thinner to four and the Wildcats still on a 7-0 run since the start of the final quarter. But with 4:30 left in the game, Blake Stenger passed deep in the paint to junior Jack Cooper allowing for a minorly contested layup and it dropped, the Patriots get on the board for the 4th quarter. After that score, everything unraveled for the Cats. Albert with a wide open corner 3 again knocks it down and dug an even bigger hole for the Cats. A constant back and forth ensued halfway through the 4th and the clock started to run low, time was not on the Wildcat’s side and too little too late, Millard South pulls Q Street back into their grasp for the basketball season as the final score stood as 54-48. 

Looking at the stats, it’s adamant why South won this game. Olson went 0-8 from the field, not knocking down any shots, only scoring 5 points from free throws. Albert shot 67% from the field and scored 18 points himself, South had a total of 33 rebounds, in contrast, West only had 26. The Patriots had many other second chance opportunities for their side rather than West and they took advantage of it. Blake Stenger had a great game against an adequate West team, opening for plays and picking apart the zone defense allowing for wide open shots. 

Millard South moves to 3-6 and Millard West moves to below .500%, going to 4-5. These teams may meet again if they both pick up their seasons and face off again during the district or state playoffs.