Freshman Malaki “Kai” Ali looks to pass the ball against Menlo School at home on Jan. 24 (Photo by Rashel Naranjo)
Freshman Malaki “Kai” Ali looks to pass the ball against Menlo School at home on Jan. 24

Photo by Rashel Naranjo

Basketball Teams End Season Mixed, Optimistic About Next Year

February 15, 2023

Boys Basketball


Photo by Rashel Naranjo

Freshman Malaki “Kai” Ali looks to pass the ball against Menlo School at home on Jan. 24

“Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzz”, the last buzzer went off at the end of the final quarter of the boys basketball game against Crystal Springs at home on Feb. 10. Battling for a winning basket, the teams called repeated time-outs, and by the end of the game, the players faces showed a mixture of exhaustion, annoyance and pride. The Senior Night game ended in a tie.

As the season neared its end, the boys basketball junior varsity and varsity teams said they had a strong season with several winning streaks, and although there were losses here and there, the teams always had a great comeback. With one more game to play on Feb. 14, the varsity team stood at 5 wins, 6 losses.

Players said there was a lot of room for improvement for returning players next season.

“It was my first time playing, and Chris really taught me a lot of fundamentals, and I feel that I really grew, as well as the team”, said freshman Christian Olvera Jaimes. “However, I could still improve a lot.”

Junior varsity team captain Tyrone “Ty” Bradford Jr. said that the team’s chemistry has improved since the start of the season as they have developed skills.

“We hit it off during the off season,” said Santiago “Santi” Hernandez. “We all have a role on this team and I feel like the fact that we all know what we can do on the court gives our team the ability to trust one another, which really contributed to us growing as a team this season”.

Girls Basketball


Photo by Rashel Naranjo

Freshman Vassidy Allen fends off University Prep opponent at home on Jan. 12

The girls basketball season ended on a happier note than last year, with more wins and a flood of unforgettable memories.

In a packed gym decorated with balloons in the school colors and posters thanking the senior players, loud cheers of excitement erupted with each great play as the Panthers won a tight victory, 23 to 19, against Castilleja on Feb. 9.  The Senior Night game celebrated captain Abigail “Aby” Banales and other senior teammates, Ashanti Gardener, Amel Holliman and Lauryn Williams.

“I’d say the season went better than last year,” said sophomore Karen Tuuholoaki, who has been playing for two years.

The girls team overcame significant challenges along the way this season, the most difficult one being that there were only seven or eight players, which meant only a couple of people could sub in for the first-string starters.

“It was three games a week, and we would play against teams that had 14 players that filled up the bench, and we only had two to three subs,” Abby said. “Sometimes we were tired because we were sore or exhausted or just overall injured. but we had to push each other and still give our all in these games.”

Junior Ashley Kaage sprained her ankle the second to last week of the season and came to the Senior Night game on crutches, unable to play but cheering from the bench.

Overall, the team ended the season with 7 wins and 15 losses, but a positive attitude about their improvement from the previous year and optimism about the future.

“I’m sad that I won’t be able to see the way they grow,” Aby said.

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