The official student media of Blue Valley Northwest High School

Dominant second half pushes Northwest past top-seeded Free State in 6A state semifinals

The boys basketball team defeated Lawrence Free State, 51-42, to advance to the 6A state championship, March 11.

March 12, 2022


Bailey Thompson

Junior Grant Stubblefield celebrates after the Huskies win over Lawrence Free State in the 6A state semifinal game.

In a matchup between the top seeds in 6A East and West, Blue Valley Northwest overcame a 11-point second quarter deficit as they defeated the Lawrence Free State Firebirds, 51-42.

Head coach Aaron Ihm said the team came into the game knowing Free State was a skilled and athletic team so the Huskies would have to rely on other factors if they wanted to win.

“We knew that they were really athletic and very skilled so we wanted to lean on our strength and height,” Ihm said.

The Huskies trailed for a majority of the first quarter and were down 19-8 late in the second quarter. Junior Grant Stubblefield said the Huskies fell away from their game plan which caused them to fall behind.

“We started giving up second chances and open shots that we shouldn’t have let them get. We were also hurrying on offense which we knew they liked to do,” Stubblefield said.

Coming out of halftime, Northwest switched to a 2-3 zone on defense which helped the Huskies come back, Ihm said.

“We hadn’t really shown zone all year, but we had been working on it for times like this. We thought the flow of the game dictated that we needed to get in some gaps and make them think a little,” Ihm said. 

With the help of the zone, the Huskies rattled of a 10-0 out of halftime to take the lead. 

“We talked in the locker room and we knew we had to get some points on the board and get the momentum going our way because if they kept making shots it could’ve gone south very quickly,” Stubblefield said.

The Firebirds got up to a 42-40 lead with 2:51 remaining in the game, but the Huskies went on a 11-0 run to win the game. 

“We did a great job making adjustments on the fly and we played good defense, rebounded well and made some important free throws down the stretch,” Ihm said.

With the win, the Huskies will be taking on Wichita Heights for the state championship at 6:15 today. 

Leave a Comment
About the Contributors
Photo of Jack Nitz
Jack Nitz, Sports Editor

Jack Nitz is a senior and the Sports Editor of “The Express.” Outside of newspaper he is the Senior Class President, the DECA treasurer, National Honor Society membership co-chair, and a member of Quill and Scroll Honor Society and Spanish National Honor Society. In his free time Jack enjoys spending time with friends, watching and playing sports and talking about Fantasy Football. Jack is looking forward to covering BVNW sports this year and hopes to improve on his leadership and writing skills this year.

Photo of Bailey Thompson
Bailey Thompson, Chief Photographer

Bailey Thompson is a senior and Chief Photographer for “The Express.” Outside of staff, Bailey is in NHS, NAHS and a part of the girls soccer team. She also enjoys spending time with her friends and family, as well as binge-watching TV shows and movies on Netflix. Bailey is excited for what the future has in store for her and is ready for the next step.

BVNWnews • Copyright 2024 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in

Comments (0)

We love hearing what our readers think! Let us know your opinions.
All BVNWnews Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *