Boys varsity basketball takes its second win over Greenville


On Friday, February 17, the boys took on the Greenville Yellow Jackets for their eighteenth game. This ended in a season-altering win, putting an end to a three-game losing streak for the Rangers and further damaging the Yellow Jacket’s reputation. This victory was characterized by unrelenting physical effort and cohesive team communication that was evident from tipoff.

However, the first quarter was a meager glimpse of what the Ranger offense and defense could do to generate their eventual win over the opposing Greenville team. From the beginning, the boys showcased substantial efforts on the floor offensively leading to a tie game 8-8 just four minutes into gameplay. it was their lack of defensive communication as a team that led to such a close score and a disadvantage going into the second quarter with Greenville leading 16-11. The bench players repeatedly characterized ranger ball defense as “quiet” and “soft” unlike their defense in past winning games. Because of this, the end result of Friday’s game was not as promising as previously hoped by fans, players, and coaches.

The second quarter put this notion to an end with a defensive comeback and continued offensive pressure to give the rangers an edge over Greenville going into halftime 28-22. However, to gain a lead, the boys began to communicate effectively and play like a team, instead of five parts of one. This led to them obtaining much-needed momentum halfway through the second quarter, making the score now 20-18. Four minutes later, the score was 28-22, a solid foundation for Rangerball going into the second half.

Immediately setting the tone for the third quarter was a three-pointer from Jonas VanderWoude, bringing the threat of defeat into the minds of Yellow Jacket players. Now, the score sat at 31-22 Rangers, a substantial lead indifferent to the mistakes seen by Rangerball in the first quarter.  The boy’s lead was furthered as gameplay continued through solid defensive and offense efforts up to the standard set by traditional Ranger style. Two and three-pointers throughout the late third quarter, such as the few made by Jake Koning, defined the offense that would eventually takedown Greenville. At the end of the third quarter, the Rangers’ lead was now 38-26.

The fourth quarter was an excellent continuation of the scoring seen in the third quarter by the boys. Just two minutes into the last quarter, they had stretched their lead to 44-29, then 51-35 shortly after. After fighting to gain momentum earlier, the boys had it all on their side and it was now full steam ahead. In the last few minutes, Greenville had nothing to counter the Ranger’s now impeccable offense, making the final score 57-39 Rangers.

This win comes as a relief for many supporters of the Ranger cause, redeeming themselves from the past couple of slightly disappointing losses. This once again ties their overall record to 9-9 and effectively prepares the boys for playoffs, something for which high expectations are held for Rangerball.

An additional special positive for the Rangers that night was new varsity player Brendan Cargill taking on Levi McKenzie’s number and role, following Levi’s unfortunate injury rendering him unable to play for the rest of the season.

“Brendan and I have always been very close. My season is over so it was honestly pretty special to be able to give the number to him. It does suck not being able to play with him. He definitely wasn’t as comfortable as he could have been in the first half, but we talked at halftime and he came out and played with a lot more confidence in the second half,” Levi notes.

Their next matchup lies at home, against Lowell on Tuesday, February 21st. There, the team aims to garner a winning record and bolster its reputation against the Red Arrows.