Roundup: Winter Break Tournament of Champions

Alex Verdelus, Copy Editor

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During the winter break, Oak Ridge’s varsity basketball team traveled to Georgia to compete in four games for the tournament of champions contest from December 16 to December 30.

Oak Ridge began the tournament against freedom high school in a district game, in which they won by a wide disparity, 99-59.

After winning their conference game they advanced to the national round and faced off against the McEachern Indians at Wheeler High School in Marietta and ended up losing 68-76. The pioneers then traveled to Macon to battle against the Westside Seminoles and suffered a second consecutive loss in a tightly contested 77-76 matchup.

“We weren’t really mentally focused or prepared as a team,” said Sophomore Ornado Bent reflecting on the team’s lapses. “All we needed to do is play better defense, rebound, and we could’ve won.”

Senior Jerrell Williams talked about the anxiety the team felt from playing on a new stage and how that impacted the team’s concentration. “The reason we struggled in Georgia was because we never played on that type of platform before and we let the big lights break our confidence a little bit. All we have to do is be prepared and stay focused for anybody that comes our way.”

Oak Ridge redeemed themselves the day after by defeating Miller Grove high school 77-68 and capped off their five-game stand with a 104-85 home win against Timber Creek.

The pioneers will play their next game against the Colonial Grenadiers on January 10.

December 16 @ Freedom–Win

Team Total
Oak Ridge 99
Freedom 59

 

December 28 @ McEachern–Loss

Team Total
Oak Ridge 68
McEachern 76

 

December 29 @ Westside County–Loss

Team Total
Oak Ridge 76
Westside County 77

 

December 30 @ Miller County–Win

Team Total
Oak Ridge 77
Miller Grove 68

 

January 4 vs Wintercreek–Win

Team Total
Oak Ridge 104
Timber Creek 85