Highland Comes Up Short in Freakeast Game


Daria Khajavi

Nate Warr attempts to make a basket.

Audrey Hemingway, Sports Editor

This week, Highland hosted the most promoted basketball game of the year, Freakeast. Fans from both teams arrived early to get a good spot in hopes of seeing their team defeat their long-standing rival. The Rams took a calamitous defeat against the Leopards, with an end score of 44-37.

The game started off with a plethora of school spirit as the Highland band performed the Star-Spangled Banner. As the starting players were announced and ran onto the court, the horrifically dressed ram fam out screamed the classy visitor side.

In the first quarter, East was able to make the first basket of the game, putting them at a three-point lead. Though the Leopards had a starting advantage, the Rams came out strong, making a good effort and nearly catching up.

The level and pace of the Rams and the Leopards was considerably equal. Both teams held their opponents defensively, but East was able to put more balls into the net. This lead the second quarter to be filled with energy from the bench to the student section. At the end of the quarter, East started to miss their free throws and three-point shots, which gave the Rams a chance to get back into the game, but Highland still lagged behind with a score of 28-18.
“At times it looked like we didn’t mesh as a team. We also had some unforced turnovers that we usually don’t have,” Highland center, Ammon Kaufusi said.

At halftime. Highland had performances were unbelievable, as Pep Club danced to songs like “Thriller” and “High School Musical” and cheerleaders were thrown at great heights to make the spooky Rams go crazy.
As the third quarter began, the student sections got rowdy. The cheerleaders led them in singing popular sports chants, which was a positive influence for the Rams.

“I think our student section gave us energy boosts when we needed it. We loved having the loud cheers during the game,” Kaufusi said.
At the end of the quarter, Highland junior, Gardner Folau dove for the ball with ambition to help his team catch up. He unluckily hit his head on an opposing players leg and was knocked unconscious. After receiving help by Highland trainer Mitch, he was escorted off the court to look more into his injury.

The crowds got more intense as the Rams’ anger gathered towards the East and as the competition sparked more excitement. The visitor section started to throw items onto the court, which forced the game to stop so the announcer, Stan Owen, could politely ask them to stop.
The audience grew tense as the game went on, but it wasn’t until Highland Senior, Chris Rich, stole the ball after an East mistake and made a breakaway layup. This play gave the crowd hype and was beneficial for Highland’s team.

Another announcement was made after knowledge of misconduct. Suspected East fans targeted cars with Highland stickers and loosened their lug nuts. No one knew until a junior varsity basketball player was driving home on the freeway, and they realized there was something wrong with their car. There were cars that were broken into as well.

The last few minutes of the game were full of commotion and the thought of Highland catching up to East was thought amongst the ram fam, but unfortunately, the Rams fell short of the Leopards. Despite the score, Highland did really well and Kaufusi agrees.

“Our defense was pretty good, showing we held them to 44 points. We could’ve done a lot better on offense though,” Kaufusi said.
Make sure to cheer on and support the Highland Boys basketball team this Friday at seven O’clock at home.