An unfortunate end: Boys basketball falls in sectionals

Joy Jackson ‘21

The Benet Academy Redwings varsity boys basketball team capped off a very successful season with an unfortunate result. With a final record of twenty-four wins and eight losses, the team accomplished much under head coach Gene Heidkamp. In doing this, the program finished its tenth consecutive season of 21 or more wins. However, their season came to an abrupt end with a 58-55 loss to the Lake Park Lancers in Sectionals.

Benet started off the game on a high note, leading the Lancers by ten points heading into the second half. Senior Kendrick Tchoua exploded with a 25-point outing, but his offensive firepower was not enough to neutralize a Lake Park comeback, which saw them score 16 points in the third quarter. They took the lead late in the fourth quarter, and despite a last-second three-point attempt by the Redwings, they were unable to overcome Lake Park’s late-game heroics.

The only returning starter for next season will be junior center Colin Crothers. He proved to be very valuable to the team throughout the season, as Crothers and Tchoua proved to be the dynamic duo under the basket: both players were named all-conference athletes by the East Suburban Catholic Conference. Outside of Crothers, though, the Redwings will have to rely on other returning juniors who may not have had very much playing time this season and will be a major factor next season. Coach Heidkamp believes that they have learned a lot from watching the other players and will continue the legacy next year.

Heidkamp has quite a few favorite memories from the season. His first is winning the Fenwick Thanksgiving Tournament, which had sufficiently superior competition. The boys followed that up with a second place finish in the East Suburban Catholic Conference. On their road to the championship game, Benet beat many state ranked teams including DePaul Prepatory, St. Viator, and Stevenson. Following this, they won the Pontiac Christmas Tournament.

Overall, Coach Heidkamp believes the boys played well down the stretch of the season. Prior to their season-ending loss, the Redwings won five games in a row.  He believes this was no accident—he feels the boys undoubtedly played some of their best basketball towards the end of the season. Coach Heidkamp and the returning players are thrilled to see what the next season will hold for Redwings.