Spencer DuPuis takes a look at Heritage High School athletics as the winter sports season wrapped up last week:
Boys basketball finished with a record of 8-14 and 5-7 in the Dulles District. Girls basketball finished with a record of 10-12 and 6-6 in the Dulles District. The wrestling team has two qualified for the 4A North Regional. The Boys swim team won Conference 21 and 4A North titles and the girls were runner-up for the Conference 21 title. The gymnastics team will send Courtney Walker to the 5A North Region meet at Stone Bridge today.
The Pride Boys basketball team has struggled at times but has managed to win six out of there last 11, including their big upset against Loudoun Valley, 63-61, with junior AJ Gray hitting the game-winning free throws with under 10 seconds remaining. Heritage battled back after being down by 14 at one point while holding Valley’s Paul Rowley to only 7 points.
Senior Paul Conteh performed well on his Senior Night putting up 9 points and helping the team in the paint with rebounds. Junior starters PG Jesse Case and F Stanley Seldon have averaged 14 and 10 points per game respectively. Freshman Zach Garrett was promoted to the varsity team on January 28 to face John Champe and has preformed well with the limited minutes he has had.
Heading into the tournament the win agasinst Loudoun Valley should really boost their confidence. The Pride will play against Millbrook High School on Tuesday to start the Conference 21 tournament
The Pride Girls basketball won 6 out of there last 8 games and has shown a spark since a 57-54 overtime win vs John Champe on January 28.
They won their final regular season game against Loudoun Valley, 52-40, with Senior Kayla Tibbs dropping 18 points in her final regular season game of her high school career also freshman Lana Zjojo dropped 20 points with 6 three pointers.
Coach Nicole Barnes on Kayla Tibbs’ season,”Our lone senior Kayla Tibbs has been the linchpin of our team. She is having such a big year achieving some major milestones. She signed to play at Glenville State in the fall. She has had to shift from a guard position to playing a post. This has really improved her game and understanding of the sport. She hit the 1000 career points mark and continues to shine from inside the paint, behind the arch, and on the foul line.”
She also says, “Sophomore Mikahyla Winslow first year playing high school basketball is a multi-sport athlete playing softball as well. This has really improved her ability to read the ball and react quickly. She it’s so strong in the list position despite her height. She is such a strong athlete.”
Coach Barnes on the standout moment of the season,”A stand out had been our home game against Park View. As a whole we played such a inside-outside game. In fact, we were moving the ball so well that we didn’t even realize that senior Kayla Tibbs scored a whopping 37 points giving her 1,000th career point!”
With a young team Heritage looks for another stretch run in the playoffs with the play from their young players key. The Pride will play at Sherando to start the tournament Tuesday.
The Wrestling team has had two wrestlers qualify for the region 4A North tournament which starts today: sophomore Fletcher Davis and junior Matt Marsteller.
Davis has done well this year with a record of 27-10. Marsteller finished the year with a 14-16 record.
They both finished the season at the conference 21 championship event placing 4th to qualify for the 4A North regional event.
Coach Mike Hill on the season, “The team made vast improvements from last year. While we still are not where the coaching staff would like us to be, we are impressed with the effort and improvement made by the team as a whole.” He stays the surprise standout was Jacob Holton, avenging numerous losses from last season and leading the team in reversals and near fall points.
The Pride Swim teams have done very well this year with the boys getting the conference title and the girls were runner up in Conference 21. Heritage won 7 events at the Conference 21 title meet;
Boys 200 Medley Relay: Heritage (Tim Burris SR, Michael Burris FR, Phillip Crouch SO, Jake Schroth SR) 1:41.24
Boys 50 Free: Tim Burris SR (Heritage) SR 22.12
Boys 100 Fly: Jake Schroth (Heritage) SR 54.62
Boys 100 Free: Jake Schroth (Heritage) SR 49.95
Boys 200 Free Relay: Heritage (Tim Burris SR, Phillip Crouch SO, Michael Burris FR, Jake Schroth SR) 1:31.60
Boys 100 Back: Tim Burris (Heritage) SR 56.75
Boys 100 Breast: Phillip Crouch (Heritage) SO 1:01.92
So far they are bringing 21 swimmers to the State meet. Most notably Seniors Tim Burris and Jake Schroth 5 and 4 respectively. Also, Sophomore Phillip Crouch qualified for 4 events in the big meet. Girls, senior Katie Lee and, sophomore, Kayla Snider both qualified for 4 events.
**Just last night the Pride boys won the school’s first ever regional swim title at the 4A North meet … check back to Viva Loudoun on Monday for the complete story on the big win.**
Finally, the Pride Gymnastics team has competed well this season for only having a total of 5 gymnasts on the team.
When asked about the best moment of the season coach Aubel said, “Probably the highlight would be at Harrisonburg Invite and having 4 of the 5 team members competing.”
She continued: “Whenever you are starting with a new team, team unity, team discipline and skill all need to come together. We had high absenteeism from practice and meets which hurt us in the long run from developing into a contender. It also hurt us that we had injuries, but hopefully with having more participants this year we can add to it with additional freshman or transfer that will help to build a strong team for the future. I think getting more people involved earlier during preseason will help develop the team as well.”
The Pride’s Courtney Walker has qualified for the 5A North Region meet on vault, bars and floor.
Spencer DuPuis is a sophomore at Heritage High School in Leesburg, Virginia