Wildcats clinch nail-bitter over Berkley 39-38

Oxford’s Jake Champagne goes up for a shot against the Berkley defense on Friday. Champagne had 18 points in the game. Photos by Megan Kelley

By Megan Kelley
Staff Writer
Oxford High School’s boys varsity basketball team continued their winning streak Friday night with a win over Berkley, bringing the Wildcats’ record to 13-5 overall and 10-2 in the OAA Blue.
The win also marks the Wildcats sixth straight victory.
The Wildcats hosted the Bears from Berkley High School, a fellow OAA Blue contender ranked third in the league just below Oxford, which is ranked in second, just one game behind Avondale (14-5).
The game started off aggressive, with both teams hungry for a win and causing an incredibly foul heavy game. However, the physicality quickly took a turn when, in the first quarter, Oxford’s head coach Joe Fedorinchik received a technical foul after he believed he saw a Berkley player kick an Oxford player.
With Oxford’s coach essentially relegated to the bench for more than three quarters of the game, it became an uphill battle for the Wildcats who finished the first quarter with an eight point lead and just barely held on to keep the lead in the second quarter, ending the half with a 16-13 lead.
At the start of the third quarter, the Bears bounced back quickly to take the lead.
The foul calls didn’t stop either, with call after call going in favor of the Bears. Fortunately for the Wildcats, the free throw line was not kind to the Berkley players, who only made three of their 14 free throw attempts in the entire second half.
After a bit of back and forth scoring, Oxford managed to force several turnovers to take the lead in the third quarter, 31-27.
The fourth quarter saw Berkley amp up the tempo, especially on Wildcat junior Jake Champagne, who at that point had scored 10 of the Wildcat’s 31 points. The Berkley defense was unable to shut Oxford’s leading scorer down completely though, allowing him to keep the Wildcats in the game, trailing by just two points as the final seconds clicked down.
With just 16 seconds left on the clock Champagne hit what would be the game-winning three point shot putting Oxford up 39-38 at the final buzzer.
Champagne led the Wildcats in scoring with 18 points, followed by junior Luke Stoffan with 11.
The Wildcats are on the road taking on Notre Dame Prep on Monday after Leader press time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *