Boys’ Basketball: a slow start but a great finish

By Thomas Cairns

From rock bottom to the top of the mountain is the true story of West Deptford Boys’ Basketball Team this season. The Eagles are a strong, athletic, and a great defensive playing team.  At the end of January, the community said, “West Deptford? Who are they? Oh, you mean the team that’s three and eight and not evening going to make the playoffs?”

In a matter of five days, the Eagles were the team to beat. After avenging a 71-48 terrible loss to Collingwood, West Deptford upset one of the top teams in South Jersey.  Everything from that point was history. The Eagles went on a hot streak, and they could not be stopped. Beating three teams that are much higher seeds then them in the play offs, and a win over archrival Haddonfield, the Eagles couldn’t be stopped! The Eagles eventually earned the # 10 seed and traveled to Deptford on Monday March 2nd.

“This is awesome,” said West Deptford head coach John McKeown. “To know that we were 3-8, and now we have a chance to make a serious run, we’re very fortunate to be where we’re at.” “I feel with our great finish to the season we may be serious contenders in this group. We understand how difficult it is going to be, and I respect every team were going to have to play. Each game is going to get tougher and tougher, and we know what the completion is going to be like.”

The Eagles are led by junior guard Marquise Owens, and senior guard Preston Harcum. McKeown said those two are two of the hardest working and talented players he has ever seen in high school basketball.

“Marquise and Preston are truly a pleasure to coach, and I couldn’t ask for any better leaders.  We are where we are because of them,” said McKeown.

The Eagles began their playoff journey with a thrilling 63-60 victory over Deptford. McKeown said it was not by any means an easy victory. “Hats off to Deptford.  There are great,” McKeown said.

The Eagles now travel to Middle Township where not one single person is giving them even the slightest chance. Mckewon said he knows it is going to be tough, but he thinks they can pull the upset.

“Everyone doubts us. I get it. Middle Township’s a great team, and it is going to be a serious challenge, but I wouldn’t count us out,” McKeown said.