Boys basketball eliminated by Evanston 49-46

Team finishes season on high-note despite the loss


Danielle Towers

The basketball team regroups with head coach Scott Fricke at their final game against Evanston on Mar. 6

The boys basketball team’s season came to an end on Mar. 6 with a 49-46 loss to the Evanston Wildkits in the IHSA regional finals, snapping the team’s eight-game wining streak in the process.

Although the team kept pace with the reigning state runner-up for most of the night, getting as close as a 40-40 game with under five minutes to play, but a late scoring surge, which included a crucial three- pointer by junior Blake Peters, helped the Wildkits build a five-point lead that was too much for the Trevians to overcome.

“Obviously, we [were] disappointed about the outcome. We think we are good enough to still be playing, and it hurts that we aren’t because, honestly, I was expecting a deep run,” said senior forward Jaden Katz. “Overall though, we lost to a great team and it was an exciting game, so I’m trying to focus on that.”

Although being eliminated by the Wildkits for the second time in three years was difficult for the team to stomach, their valiant effort against Evanston was a testament to their improvement during the second half of the season.

After a 11-10 start that saw the team drop both regular season meetings to Evanston, the team rattled off seven consecutive wins as players like Geis, Katz, and junior Ian Burns took major strides in developing their abilities and perfecting their roles in the regular rotation.

“Our team got a lot closer in the second half of the season, which made every game and practice even more enjoyable,” said senior guard John Carragher.

“Everyone on the team got so much better, and they figured out what it took to win games and play for each other. It was really fun to watch and be a part of. We all really started to play with poise, and everyone settled into their roles and starred in them.”

The team’s undefeated February, which included a 62-55 victory over ranked Wisconsin opponent Brookfield Academy on Feb. 8 and a season sweep of Maine South, propelled the team to a six seed in the IHSA playoffs, earning them a first round date with conference rival Glenbrook North on Mar. 4.

“We knew that it was going to be a tough game. We were playing a conference team for the third time in the season after beating them twice, so we prepared like it was the Super Bowl for us,” said head coach Scott Fricke. “We didn’t hold anything back. We were ready to play in the game, and our kids showed it and played great.”

Unlike their first two victories against the Spartans on Jan. 10 and Feb. 14, the Trevians never allowed the playoff game to become a contest. A barrage of threes by Katz opened up an early 11-2 lead, the team’s all-

conference backcourt of Carragher and senior William Ryan combined for 34 points, and senior Emmett Burnside anchored a dominant defensive performance, finishing with two blocks and a steal in the 59- 31 victory.

The Trevians’ win also brought an end to the career of highly- respected Glenbrook North coach David Weber, who, despite finishing the regular season with nine wins, brought yet another well-coached team into the postseason.

“Coach Weber is a legend. He’s one of the best coaches that I’ve seen in this area, and I have a lot of respect for him and the success that he’s had,” said Fricke. “It’s unfortunate that he didn’t have the talent that he normally has, but they [GBN] were always prepared for every game that they played this season.”

While the loss to Evanston brought an abrupt end to the team’s dominant stretch of play during the second half of the season, the team felt immense pride in their accomplishments this season, particularly in their ability to elevate their performance against elite opponents like Loyola, Glenbrook South, and Evanston.

“Before the playoffs started we knew each game was going to be a battle, so the game plan was to compete and be the tougher team in each game and I believe we did that,” said Ryan.

Although integral players like Ryan, Carragher, Burnside, and Katz are set to graduate, the team is expected to receive a major infusion of talent for the 2020-21 season.

Burns, Geis, and the other returning juniors will welcome a deep group of rising juniors to the team next season, and they will look to build on the success of the 2020 team.

“I see the team going in a very positive direction next year. The other juniors and I will try to maintain the tough identity that our seniors built this year. They taught us lessons, and we are ready to follow in their footsteps,” said Geis. “We are looking to do something special in the playoffs for the New Trier program and all the former players that have made it so great for so many years.”