Boys basketball avoids upset with big fourth quarter

Owen Aanestad, Online Editor-In-Chief

“My good friend Ryne Vander Leest always says it’s tough to beat your rival twice. It didn’t look good in the first half but we played smart down the stretch and got a win out of it,” said junior Ben Hoefer.

Hoefer despite only playing a couple of minutes beat the buzzer of the third quarter with his lay in that went on to help facilitate the Trojans big comeback.

The boys basketball team took down cross-town rival City High for the second time this season by a final score of 68-62.

Coming off one of their biggest wins of the season at Cedar Rapids Prairie the boys basketball team faced off with their quick and athletic cross-town rival City High.

The Little Hawks jumped out to an 8-3 and forced a West High timeout before Jacob Koch ’24 responded with back-to-back corner threes to tie the game at nine with 3:30 left in the first. Christian Barnes ’22 got out in transition for an easy lay-in to force a City High timeout and go up 13-9. Jack McCaffery ’25 made a nice move in the lane to knock down a jumper and give the Trojans a two-point lead heading into the second. Sophomore Kareem Earl’s floater off an inbounds play put the Trojans up 22-16 with six minutes left in the half. City High’s Jamari Newson ’22 led the Little Hawks on a 10-0 run filled with second chances on the offensive end and a handful of transition layups to make it 22-26 City High with 2:48 left in the second. The Trojans’ offense struggled to get things going and let the Little Hawks add six more to their lead and go into the half up 34-22.

Earl got things started for the Trojans when he knocked down a three from the top of the key to end West’s scoring drought as they tried to get themselves back in the game. City High’s Trey Wright ’25 fought through the connect and picked up an and-one to make it 33-46 Little Hawks with 1:53 left in the third. After leading by as much as 14, City High went into the fourth up 42-49. McCaffery’s corner three a minute into the fourth helped lead the Trojans all the way back to a tie game at 49 with 6:28 left in the game. Pete Moe ’22 picked up a steal in the lane and threw it ahead in transition to Earl for an easy lay-in to give the Trojans their first lead of the second half with 2:57 left in the game. With the game all tied up again at 62 and under a minute left West High’s offense pulled the ball out and set up their offense in hopes of getting a good look. Barnes found Moe on the block where he was hugged and on the other side of a personal foul. Moe hit two free throws to give the Trojans a 64-62 lead and the ball with 36.8 seconds left. After inbounding the ball the Little Hawks fouled Barnes in hopes of getting the ball back but the senior iced the game not once but twice when he hit two free throws himself to make it a two-possession game as time expired. West completed the sweep of the Little Hawks by a final score of 68-62. Moe led the Trojans in scoring on the night with 23 points.

The boys basketball team will be back in action on Jan. 25 at home against Waterloo East.