St. Charles West (SCW) visited the Winfield Warriors on Tuesday, Feb. 4 and what followed was a fantastic game of basketball.
The two teams met earlier this season at SCW, with Winfield edging out the Warriors of SCW in overtime.
In this most recent game, Winfield didn’t leave it until late to take care of business. They beat SCW in regular time, 52-45.
The SCW players would have surely been hungry for a win after that dramatic game a few weeks ago, which made the win all the more sweet for Winfield and head coach Bryan Keim. The win also keeps their fantastic season alive.
“That was a huge win for us for a couple of reasons. One, it keeps us in the race for a conference championship. Two, it was nice to respond after a tough game in the Bowling Green championship game,” Keim said.
The Bowling Green game he was referring to was a loss in the championship game of the Bowling Green Tournament, to Clopton.
Winfield beat Louisiana and Bowling Green on their way to that final. In Tuesday’s game against SCW, fans got to see another shining, highlight reel performance from Winfield guard Bryant Reeves. He had 25 points on the night and dished out several assists as well.
But the win required a lot of little things from other players as well, and Keim said that his team delivered on those little things.
“Bryant took over last night and it was fun to watch. Everyone played a role in that win, though: guys taking charges, getting key defensive rebounds, and battling their butts off defensively. I think everyone elevated their game for our seniors especially,” Keim said.
SCW didn’t go down without a fight, by any means, with SCW player Josh Newell scoring an impressive 20 points.
“They’ve got three really good scorers on their team. Our goal was to try to take away one guy and limit the other two the best we could. We did a pretty good job all night on all three. Hitting long buzzer beater threes from number 4 (Newell) isn’t something you game plan against,” Keim said.
Tuesday was senior night for Winfield, and a big goodbye was sent out for Reeves, Charlie Rhoades, Chase Rankin and Emma Burkemper on the girls side.
“Our seniors will be greatly missed. We are already down one guy to a shoulder injury, Chase Rankin. The other two guys, Bryant and Charlie, are two guys that have been varsity players since their freshmen year and have gone through so much to get us to this point,” Keim said.
That being said, this Winfield team is rich with returning players, which will only lead to a strong future.
“Although we’ll be sad to see our seniors go, we are still very excited about the quality of guys that will be returning and taking the next step,” Keim said. “I’d like to say thank you to our seniors for everything. I appreciate them sticking it out all four years and battling through a lot of adversity along the way. I hope they enjoy this season and realize all their hard work is paying off.”