Boys varsity basketball adds another win to its record over Greenville


On Friday, January 20th, the boys varsity basketball team traveled away to Greenville for its fourth conference match of the season. Following their loss to Northview, the team looked to gain a win to boost morale, and that it did-triumphing over Greenville 55-45.

This close-fought game is a direct reflection of the improvements Greenville has seen across its team in recent years. The Yellow Jackets’ 5-5 record this season highlighted that, prompting a large turnout from their community for another conference game. Alas, Rangerball showed no concern by clinching a small lead early on that allowed them to stay ahead of their opponent for the entirety of the night.

“We knew Greenville was a lot better than the past years so it wasn’t too much of a shock. We went into it like any other game knowing we had to give our best or it may not turn out how we would like,” comments senior Levi McKenzie.

Just about three minutes in, Jonas VanderWoude’s five points carried his team to an 8-4 lead. Following that, Greenville’s response altered the score to 10-8, then as the first quarter ended the Rangers were ahead by 15-12. This tight first quarter acted as a foreshadowing of how the remainder of the game would play out.

The second quarter went very similarly for both teams. It was a neck-and-neck battle, one for the boys to keep their lead and to hold off Greenville’s suddenly effective offense. The famed Rangerball defense faltered slightly as an effect of that. As the Rangers scored, their opponent would too-making for the score as the first half drew to a close 26-24. However, Levi McKenzie’s 3-pointer at the buzzer changed the Rangers’ lead to 29-24.

Following halftime, the third quarter is when the team began to shake off bad luck defensively and regain their typical impressive performance. A bundle of 2-pointers from the Rangers throughout the third quarter and Greenville’s minimal scoring at this time allowed the boys to stay ahead 40-34 as the third quarter ended.

But sometimes, the last few minutes of a game are the most suspenseful when it comes to sports. Either uplifted by its substantial student section showing, or an urge to fight back, Greenville’s efforts in the fourth quarter were nerve-wracking for Rangers watching. With the second half of the fourth quarter, the score was now a nail-biting 40-44 as a result of a positive streak for Greenville.

However, the team’s ability to perform under pressure was on full display that night. Rangerball managed to craft a scoring streak of its own following that, making the score 51-42 a few minutes later, then 55-45 as the final buzzer rang.

Senior Jake Koning reflected saying, “The game went overall pretty well, although we didn’t play our best game defensively, but we came back in the second half and finished strong.”

This win was a positive result of this week’s hard work in practices for them, and also prepares them all for their next matchup: next, the boys face off against Lowell on Tuesday, January 24th, at 7 p.m.