Varsity Basketball Teams Score Victory on Senior Night


Photo courtesy of Dan DiFonzo

Senior boys and girls on the varsity basketball teams players in their final home game against the Wheaton Knights Feb. 15.

Nathan Pianalto, Sports Staff Writer

In their last regular season home games, the varsity boys (109) and girls (108) basketball teams were victorious on senior night as they took down the Wheaton Knights Jan. 15.

The girls starting lineup included seniors Denise Mack, Emily Huynh and Kimberly Wambogo. In a show of excellent sportsmanship, the Knights allowed Wambogo to win the tip-off, because she was unable to play due to an injury.

The girls soared past the Knights (118), 6332.  Their strong start in the first quarter secured their dominating win, as they began with an early 284 lead.  

A well-organized defense and multiple three point baskets allowed the girls to build a big lead, with Huynh scoring 13 points.

As a leader of the team and someone who has been on varsity for four years, Huynh has been consistently looked up to as well as supported by her teammates.

“It felt pretty good,” Huynh said. “Basketball has always been a big part of my life and for my final season to come to a close, it feels like a big relief.”

The boys defeated the Knights (0–19), 50–42 in a scrappy game, consisting of an aggressive defense and lots of fouls. The game started by featuring a full senior starting five, Matt DiFonzo and Andrew Pace, alongside first-time starters Aidan Brami, Jeffrey Gomez and Eric Hernandez.

The boys team features a total of nine seniors, and the four who usually start wanted to have the other five seniors get the spotlight.

Among those five, there was senior guard Eric Hernandez, who switched roles from supporting his teammates to now being the focus of the team’s support.  

“At first, I was nervous, but all my teammates and coaches were supportive and told me to be confident,” Hernandez said. “It was a great experience, and I had a lot of fun.”

In the first half, both teams volleyed back-and-forth, resulting in a close game with several lead changes. The Rams were ahead 22–18 at halftime.

By the third quarter, the Rams’ strong defense and Wheaton’s foul trouble slowed the Knights’ offense, which continued throughout the rest of the game.

After the Rams’ win, head coach Todd Dembroski reflected on the seniors’ impact throughout his past three years of coaching, as he has seen them develop and grow as teammates.

“I’m sad to see them leaving us, because I can’t imagine a better group of seniors to have on this team,” Dembroski said. “They’ve grown a lot as basketball players, but more importantly they’ve grown as young men.”

The Rams will take on the Wootton Patriots Feb. 22 away, with the boys playing at 5:30 p.m, and the girls at 7:15 p.m. for their final regular season games.

Aidan Brami is the print copy editor and Matthew Difonzo is the sports managing editor for the Rampage.