In the last week of January, the Bishops worked against some poor weather and some tough competition.
Deacon boys basketball started the week with a trip to Roanoke to take on North Cross. This was the second time the two teams have met this season. In their first competition, the Raiders had been missing a few key players. With North Cross at full strength, VES’ young deacon squad had a little trouble finding their rhythm and ultimately fell.
Varsity girls basketball took the court at home against Roanoke Catholic on Wednesday. In the early minutes of the game, there was a bit of back and forth battling with the Bishops coming out with high energy despite missing a few of their key contributors. Senior Grace Williams and sophomore Holly Koudelka controlled the boards, and senior Cameron Basnight did a solid job setting the tempo from the point guard position. Despite great work from the home team, Roanoke Catholic pushed ahead heading into halftime. At the start of the third quarter, the Celtics began to establish their game, going inside out and putting up some great shots. The Bishops found themselves in a bit of a hole but junior Janiera Carr stepped off the bench and provided a spark. The Bishops played some stifling defense forcing a number of turnovers and going on a number of fast breaks. Unfortunately, Roanoke Catholic made just a few more shots and the Bishops could quite hold on in their comeback effort, ending the came with a 29-37 loss for VES.
Van Every Gym also saw a home game for the boys varsity B squad on Wednesday. Forest Youth Athletic Association provided another team for the varsity B boys to tip off against. Showing off their strong offense, the Bishops won.
The swim team traveled west to Roanoke Catholic on Wednesday for their last meet going into the long weekend. The team posted more personal successes and many dropped significant time in their events. Of particular note, Cody Carnes '21 hit 22.9 and took first place in the 50 Free event and Sarah Bennett Smith '20 qualified for the 50 Free Bonus State Cut (so if her relay qualifies she will get to go and swim). Ultimately, the boys beat both Roanoke Catholic and Carlisle 52-39 and 67-7 respectively and the girls were edged out by Roanoke Catholic 52-39, but took wins against Chatham Hall (58-52) and Carlisle (55-16). The team is looking forward to strong competition in the Conference Meet hosted by Hargrave Military Academy on February 8.
After a weather cancellation earlier in the week, varsity boys basketball was back in action on the road against Benedictine on Thursday. The Benedictine offense played the possession game––holding the ball for 2-3 minutes at a time, but the Bishops did a good job of keeping them out in front and rotating to hold them off. The Bishops have really taken pride in their defense this season and their strength in that area has led to many of their wins this season. Bryce Waterman ‘19 was the leading scorer with 18 points for the night. Michale Caprice ‘19 and Ismael Plet ‘20 followed behind with eight points and Saliou Diop rounded out the offense with five points. The Bishops marched on to win 39-34, their fifth straight win, bringing their record to 16-6. After the game, Head Coach Darko Sedlar commented, “ It is a big deal to enter February with a 5 game winning streak, but the momentum can switch very quickly. If we play tough defense, we can play against anybody.”
The Bishops finished the week with a Wrestling in Van Every and Barksdale Gym––taking on Norfolk Collegiate and Oak Hill Academy.