Varsity basketball defeats Western Albemarle

Blue Streaks varsity basketball coach Don Burgess was proud of how his team played Tuesday, Nov. 27.

The Streaks pulled off a seven-point win in a season-opening game against Western Albemarle High School, which ended 47-40.

Last year, Western Albemarle lost to Marshall High School in the Class 3 state championship game and averaged 59.6 points per game. Burgess had been preparing for the game by spending time working on defense during practices in hopes to keep the Warriors at bay.

“Defensively, I think we did a pretty good job [against] a pretty good team. They went to states last year,” Burgess said. “For us to keep them below their scoring average is pretty good.”

In a scoring drought the first three minutes of the game, the Streaks shots weren’t falling. The first point on the board was a free throw by senior Christian Velker. Burgess said that their offense is definitely something that the team is working on.

“Our offense is not as good as we want it to be right now, [but] that’s to be expected this early in the season, so that’s why we’re really working on our defense,” Burgess said.

With four seconds left in the first half, Velker made a quick jumper to put Harrisonburg ahead 24-17.

There were a couple of issues involving turnovers, but those were made up for with steals later. One of the more memorable steals occurred in the last couple of minutes, where junior D’Shawn Fields converted his steal into a layup on the other end.

As for fouls, there were three charges called on the Streaks and a tussle in the third quarter where a Western Albemarle player pushed sophomore Jazen Walker and got a foul called on him.

Some of the key players this game were Velker, who had 14 points and shot 88% from the free throw line, and Fields, who had 9 points and was a big contributor in the fourth quarter.

The Streaks are set to play their next game at Albemarle High School Nov. 30.

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