In an intense game, the Hopatcong Boys Varsity Basketball Team lost to Lenape Valley forty-four to fifty-three on Thursday, February 11th at Hopatcong High School. There were a lot of fans and enthusiasm for both teams.
The first quarter began and Lenape scored first, making the score zero to three. By the end of the first quarter, Hopatcong remained down with the score being nine to thirteen, but both teams were playing hard.
Hopatcong started the second quarter by scoring twice, tying the game at thirteen to thirteen. Both teams continued to play well throughout the second quarter; by halftime, the score was eighteen to nineteen, with Lenape in the lead.
During the second half, the Chiefs gained the lead with a shot from senior guard John McCloskey. The game was close halfway through the third quarter with Lenape leading twenty-two to twenty-three; however, Hopatcong made some mistakes that Lenape ended up benefitting from as the quarter ended. The Patriots were in the lead with a score of twenty-five to thirty-two.
The fourth quarter started and both teams continued scoring, but the Chiefs couldn’t catch up as Lenape still had an eight-point lead halfway into the fourth quarter, making the score thirty-four to forty-two. Things started looking up for the Chiefs as they made a couple of great baskets including a three-pointer by senior guard Andrew Nee.
With a minute left in the game, the Patriots still had the lead, the score being forty-four to forty-eight, but the Chiefs were catching up. The Patriots ended up maintaining their lead and won the game with an outcome of forty-four to fifty-three.
Senior center Anton Pezzano was the lead scorer with fifteen points. Senior McCloskey also scored high with fourteen points.
“It was a really intense game and we would have loved to pull out the victory,” said senior forward PJ Rodick. “The effort was there, our team left it all on the court, but unfortunately we just had a few things go their way instead of ours down the stretch. It would have been great to win, but overall it was a great game by both teams.”
“The atmosphere that night was so special. I’ll remember that night for a very long time. The game was tough from start to finish, and both teams wanted to win very badly. I would have wanted to win more than anything, but it didn’t end in our favor,” said Nee.
It was a tough loss for Hopatcong, but both teams played a good game. The Chiefs played the entire game with an immense amount of effort and passion.