Bailey Thompson

After defeating Olathe Northwest in the Sub-State championship, the boys varsity basketball team celebrates their win. Senior Grant Stubblefield holds up the plaque.

Huskies defeat Ravens 56-51 to win Sub-State Championship

The boys varsity basketball team defeated Olathe Northwest 56-51 in a close game to win the Sub-State Championship, on March 3.

March 5, 2023

After losing in the state championship last year, the boys varsity basketball team needed to defeat Olathe Northwest in the Sub-State Championship in order to have a shot at winning state this year in Witchita.

“We had set three goals at the beginning of the season: win our conference and we did that, win Sub-State and then a state championship. We knew that to do that, you’re gonna have to play in high-profile games with perceived pressure and we do some things in practice to try to get ready for that,” head coach Aaron Ihm said. “We just got to trust in what we’ve done to prepare and trust each other out there.”

The Huskies came out strong, and by the end of the first quarter, they led the Ravens 17-7. Despite getting ahead early, Olathe Northwest began to catch up to the Huskies as the game went on, and would go on to take the lead with 2:50 left in the third quarter. According to junior Jake Fritz, the team did not anticipate the game getting as close as it had, but continued to battle throughout the entirety of the game.

“We knew they were a good team. I didn’t think it would be this close but you got to roll with the punches and I think we did that,” Fritz said.

During the third quarter, the Huskies switched to a full-court defense in order to apply more pressure on the Raven’s offense according to Ihm. 

“We thought that we could expose some of their ball handling with some pressure. There were probably four or five turnovers over the course of the game where we would either run in double or we would fake like we were going to and they threw [the ball] out of bounds or have a bad pass tipped, and in games that are tight like that, that’s the difference.”

However, even after the Huskies switched their defense, the Ravens were not far behind. With 2:35 left in the game, BVNW led ONW 48-47, but according to Ihm, the Huskies continued to persist.

“It was closer than I wanted it to be but those are challenges that we got to overcome and credit to them. They played really hard and strong and they did some good things,” Ihm said

In the last two minutes of the game, the Huskies were able to increase their one-point lead to a five-point lead, finishing the game with a 56-51 victory over the Ravens to win the Sub-State championship.

“I think we did a good job keeping our heads up, keeping that mentality ready, and keeping our eyes forward and making sure everybody was on the same page,” senior Landon Braun said. 

The Huskies will play their first game in the 6A state tournament against Shawnee Mission Northwest this Wednesday at 4 p.m. at Wichita State University’s Charles Koch Arena.

“I think we just need to keep the mental aspect of this ready and everybody’s got to lock in. Like I said, three more [games], can’t be too excited. We’re happy to get there, but it’s not over yet,” Braun said.

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About the Contributors
Photo of Alyssa Gagnon
Alyssa Gagnon, Writer

Alyssa Gagnon is a senior and writer for “The Express” as well as a designer. This is her third year on staff. Outside of newspaper, Alyssa is involved in soccer, Quill and Scroll, NHS, SNHS and Kay Club. In her free time, she loves to hang out with her friends, travel, play soccer, go to the gym, and listen to music. Alyssa is very thankful to be apart of “The Express” and is excited to see where this year takes her.

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.

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