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The Student News Site of Millard West High School

The Catalyst

The Student News Site of Millard West High School

The Catalyst

The Student News Site of Millard West High School

The Catalyst

Warriors prevail over the Cats

Millard West battles Westside on the road
Nathan Delaney
Spotting up to shoot for three, junior Reese Carson tries to minimize the damage before half. With the Wildcats down nine at this point, Carson hits the dagger to cut the lead down to 6 before the break. ‘’I wanted to do as much as I could to help us before the half,’’ Carson said. ‘’I knew if I got this shot in, I would be able to walk into the second half with more confidence.’’

On Friday, Jan. 26, the Wildcats took on a top three team, the Westside Warriors. The Warriors walked into this matchup 11-4 while the Wildcats sat at a record of 7-6. The Cats were underdogs from the get go, but wouldn’t go down without a fight.

The Cats are led by junior Reese Carson who is averaging 12.5 points and 2.5 assists per game. A strong game from Carson is vital in winning these challenging matchups. On the other side of the floor, senior Kevin Stubblefield has made a name for himself averaging 16.5 points per game shooting 62% from the field. Westside’s strong senior presence would impose a tough task to say the least.

The first quarter started off quiet with both teams only scoring one field goal a piece at the halfway mark, but senior guard Jordan Gassen got things cooking with a three point shot to take a lead. A possession later Gassen would convert an ‘’and one’’ to shift the momentum on the Wildcat’s side. A slew of turnovers would take away possessions from the Cats, but their defense made up for it by limiting them to seven points.

The score after the first quarter was 10-7 Wildcats.

‘’It felt good to start hot especially in a game like this,’’ Gassen said. ‘’If we wanted to win in the end, we couldn’t find ourselves in a huge deficit that would eventually be hard to crawl out of.’’

The Cats started the second quarter on the right foot, tacking on another four right away courtesy of layups from Gassen and senior forward Cooper Fortune. The turnovers would soon catch up to Millard West, putting them only up one after leading by at most seven. The Warriors took advantage of the Cats mistakes by creating turnovers which would lead to fast break points. Going into the break, the score was 26-20.

‘’I thought we looked solid after the first quarter, and I was hoping that would translate into the second,’’ senior Max Frohloff said. ‘’When we cause that many turnovers, we shouldn’t expect ourselves to succeed and maintain a lead. We had to take care the ball in the second half if we wanted a shot at winning.’’

The Warriors came out the second half guns blazing, scoring a quick seven points from senior guards Caleb Benning and Rickey Loftin. A slight Wildcat run was starting to brew after a pair of Gassen jumpshots while the defense was starting to heat up. The Warriors returned fire after a Stubbfield three pointer and converting a charge call to give them the ball. The score after the third was 46-35 Westside.

‘’Even though they started out slow, I knew this was the team that we were going to see,’’ senior forward Tag Carmichael said. ‘’They started the half by playing a lot more physical and aggressive, so we knew we had to stay composed out there. Something was going to have to change in order for a dub.’’

The fourth quarter did not start in Millard West’s favor, with Gassen sustaining an ankle injury and freshman Cade Walker being questionable with a back injury. The Wildcats would start to trade baskets with the Warriors, but they still found themselves down ten with three minutes remaining.  A boatload of missed three throws would’ve kept them in the game, but it was Westside who came out on top 54-44.

‘’Losing this game was just another opportunity for us to get better as a team,’’ Walker said. ‘’This game is going to help us prepare for the coming weeks against teams like Millard North and South. It’s going to be all hands on deck during this stretch of the season.’’

Millard West will play a rivalry game against Millard North on Friday Feb. 2.

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About the Contributors
Brady Mar, Staff Reporter
Brady is a senior and this is his first year on staff for the CATalyst staff. He is involved with golf and Special Olympics here at Millard West. He enjoys playing sports, volunteering, and bonding with his friends. He also loves traveling to new places as well as trying new foods. Brady is excited to cover Millard West sports and learn more about the students here at Millard West.
Nathan Delaney, Staff Reporter
Nathan is a senior at Millard West and this is his second year on the CATalyst staff. He is taking Advanced Journalism, Broadcast Journalism and Yearbook this year. This summer he went to multiple journalism camps and went on a family vacation to Alaska. He also worked with the President of the Nebraska Broadcasters Association, Jim Timm, on the High School Radio Project. He is looking forward to expanding to new parts of journalism and furthering his skills this year.

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