Boys’ basketball advances to Region II semifinals


Halle Barham

Trailing through most of the game, senior guard Bradley Saad drives towards the basket in the team’s 41-35 win over Centennial Tuesday night at Lewisville High School.

Alex Moore, WTV Staff Reporter

Trying to follow in the path blazed by the girls’ basketball team, the boys’ basketball team is now just two wins from its first trip to the state.

But things didn’t come easy Tuesday night.

Taking on District 9-5A rival Centennial at Lewisville High School, the boys’ started out slowly and that was the pace of the game as Centennial slowly and methodically pulled away for a seven point halftime lead 24-17.

Centennial would continue to hold a lead through the third quarter but entering the fourth it was only a three point margin as the Titans led 31-28.

“Honestly 3rd quarter didn’t start too well,” head basketball coach Marcus Eckert said. “We got down 14 points midway through the 3rd quarter, it was 31 to 17 and at that point Carter was able to go at number 25 Jonathan Washington from Centennial and get him in foul trouble. I think that made a really big impact when he went out of the game. But I think more than that, We had five seniors out there. We kind of changed our line up just a little bit compared to what we normally have. Reggie was on the bench. Zach was on the bench. And those five seniors who have been dreaming about this for a long time decided that they were not going to lose. I think that that was the biggest difference. At half we talked about a couple of adjustments but it was really just the seniors stepping up and doing what it takes to win. And not doing it for themselves but for each other.”

However, in the fourth, the boy’s would clamp down on defense limiting Centennial to just four points. Meanwhile, senior Carter Brown and the rest of the team would score 13 points for the 41-35 come from behind win.

The win sends the boys’ team to the Region II semifinals where they will face off with one of the state’s top 5A teams Lancaster on Friday in Garland. The game against Lancaster will be a rematch of December’s Dallas ISD Coca-Cola tournament.

“We didn’t play real well that game,” Eckert said. “They shot 31 of 36 at the free throw line. And we only lost by ten which is pretty crazy to give up that amount of foul shots and still be in the game. We also had some foul trouble. I think our kids know that we are better than [Lancaster]. The great thing is, kind of ironic thing is no one thinks we are going to win except us. We’re the underdog. They’re highly favored. I feel like that’s only going to motivate us more to play loose and to have fun and to do what it takes to win. We can’t be more thrilled with the match up.”