Last Thursday, (2/23) A ranked matchup in regionals. #4 vs #20. Hennessey vs Sayre. The Eagles started out losing the tip to 6’7 forward Clayton Mosburg, but the tip went straight to Seth Simunek and the Eagles got out to a 2-0 lead and then a James Sims steal and score lead to a 4-0 lead in the first 20 seconds. James Sims started off well, which will be crucial if the eagles want to make a state, he hit a pull-up midrange, then later picked up a block and a euro-step bucket, and the score sat 8-5 with 4:11 to go, James Sims had 6 at the time. Sayre, though, was not willing to give up, they continued to trade the eagles, shot for shot, to keep it close. 

The Eagles though, following a few buckets, clutched to a 7-point lead with a minute remaining in the quarter. Jael Torres picked up a shot before the buzzer sounded, and when it did, the Eagles held a 16-7 lead headed into the 2nd quarter. 

Following a tough start from 3 for James Sims, the first bucket of the 2nd quarter fell when James hit a 3 from the corner with 5:47 left in the 2nd. Previously mentioned Clayton Mosburg scored back-to-back buckets for Sayre, but James Sims responded right back with a 3. He had 14 of the Eagles 23 to that point, as they sat atop 23-11 headed into a timeout with 3:10 to go in the 2nd. 

We went into half 28-11 following a dramatic buzzer-beater put back for Hunter Weber. Seth Simunek started the 2nd half for the eagles with a layup. Sayre went back to making it shot for shot basketball, but when trailing by 20 points, you need something a little more than that if you’re gonna advance in the winner’s bracket. As the seconds ticked to a stoppage in the 3rd, the Eagles withheld a 38-16 lead. 

The bench was able to come in with a comfortable lead following a James Sims three to start the 4th. They weren’t able to scrounge any points up until within 2 minutes when Ethan Munroe hit 2 threes and Weston Smith scored. 

Final Hennessey Eagles 51 – Sayre Eagles 26

So the Eagles move on, and play on Saturday, 7:30. That game will be broadcasted live on hennesseyeagles.tv. 

James Sims had – 17 points, 3 boards, 3 assists

Jael Torres had – 9 points, 4 boards

Layton Choate had – 6 points, 3 boards, 4 assists 

Story by Taylor Ladwig, Photos by Jack Quirk