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Boys’ Basketball falls to AB 54-39 on Senior Night

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Senior basketball players lining up with their parents

Senior basketball players lining up with their parents

Senior basketball players lining up with their parents

Varshini Ramanathan and Kai-Jia Yue

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On Tuesday, February 14, WA Boys’ Basketball failed to maintain their narrow lead over the Acton-Boxboro Colonials and fell further behind as the game went on, finally ending at a 54-39 loss. Although WA’s deficit was clear from halftime onward, the Ghosts kept the tension up until the end of the game.

Being the last home game of the season, the night began by honoring seniors Armen Almasian, Erik Bibbo, Jonathan Glidden, and Eric Jacobsen, as well as their parents.  After a short picture session, the players returned to the court to begin the game. The large crowd of mostly WA fans made their voices heard through cheers and applause as the lineups were announced.

WA started out in the lead by taking possession from AB and snatching a basket less than two minutes into the game. After a tense standoff, WA and AB both scored in quick succession. The score was 7-5 Ghosts halfway through the first quarter.

Senior Armen Almasian scored for the third time after a short time and brought the score to 9-5. Although AB managed a shot at the very end of the quarter, they still trailed WA 9-7.

Westford Academy maintained its 2-point lead for the first few minutes of the quarter, but AB soon tied the game 11-11. Just short of halfway through the second quarter, they scored once again to pull ahead for the first time. The Ghosts nearly made a basket just seconds after but failed to close the gap. By the time they made a 3-pointer with 3:50 left in the half, AB was quick to score and bring the score to 15-14 AB.

Acton-Boxboro attempted to score multiple times in quick succession but ultimately failed, letting WA take control and have Almasian score once again. Their 16-15 lead would be the last for a while, though, as AB scored multiple times leading up to the last minute of the half. By the final few seconds, WA had slipped 21-16 behind its rival.

Things seemed to have a made a turnaround after halftime, as WA managed to get to 21-19 in the first 30 seconds, but AB took off from there. In just under two minutes, AB scored four times to gain a 27-19 lead over WA. After the Ghosts made one shot they took a time out, and soon after that senior captain Glidden scored a 3-pointer that brought the score to 27-24.

The score stagnated for about two minutes, but the Ghosts broke the standoff to score. After alternating shots back and forth between the teams, including a basket from sophomore Scott Beattie, the Ghosts ended the quarter behind 36-28.

A few seconds into the fourth quarter, AB set the trend with a basket. They widened their lead to over a ten-point margin from there and were ahead 48-30 with only half of the fourth quarter remaining. WA had several near misses, but was unable to stop their opponents’ momentum.

The fans on either side began to get into heated shouting matches. AB’s side called “we made playoffs!” repeatedly, referring to the WA team not making playoffs, while WA chanted insults of their own in response. As the match continued, they changed their tactic, deciding instead to call “thank you, seniors!” as the boys played out the final few seconds of their senior night game.

In the meantime, a few free throw points had gone neither here nor there for the Ghosts, who still trailed 50-33. Almasian edged in a basket but AB retaliated just as fast, bringing the score to 54-35 with about one minute left in the game. Junior Nicholas Giovino scored twice in quick succession, inciting cheers from the WA crowd, but it was not enough to overturn AB’s wide lead. The Ghosts ended with a 54-39 loss.

Despite the fact that the Ghosts failed to outplay their rivals, head coach Chris Bramanti remained optimistic about the boy’s performance. He cited fatigue as a main reason as to why the team fell behind towards the end, and expressed his hope for future seasons.

“We just got tired, and we didn’t have enough guys step up, which was unfortunate, but I’m proud of the guys,” he said. “[For next year] I’m looking for some of the young guys to grow [and] step up and try to move this team forward, because that’s what we need.”

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Boys’ Basketball falls to AB 54-39 on Senior Night