ALEXANDRIA — Juniata Valley wrapped up the common season collection with Bellwood-Antis with a 51-44 victory Thursday at dwelling.
The win meant the groups cut up the common season collection for the third yr in a row, with each groups profitable on their dwelling courtroom the previous two seasons and profitable on opposing courts three years in the past.
The groups have performed in 4 separate PIAA championship video games the final 4 seasons and every has gained one district championship, with B-A’s coming over Juniata Valley final season.
Although the groups are prone to meet once more on this yr’s District 6 Class 2A playoffs, and presumably once more within the state finals, there’s additionally an opportunity that B-A seniors like Alli Campbell, Emilie Leidig and Sakeria Haralson have performed their closing recreation in opposition to Juniata Valley seniors like Halee Smith and Hayden Taylor.
The Mirror’s Michael Boytim caught up with all 5 of these gamers and coaches Jim Swaney and Rachelle Hopsicker and requested their favourite recollections of the collection over the previous 4 years.
Hayden Taylor: “The environment is all the time loopy. I got here out of college, and whereas we had been actually nonetheless in class, the road was forming exterior (for tickets). It’s loopy to see the group help each time we play them. It’s such an excellent rivalry. It’s such a enjoyable recreation to play.”
Halee Smith: “I do know it wasn’t simply me, it was the entire group, however that buzzer-beater we had sophomore yr (to beat Bellwood-Antis at Bellwood, the final time B-A has misplaced at dwelling), that was wonderful. That was the very best playoff environment we’ve ever had, and it wasn’t even a playoff recreation. It all the time goes all the way down to the wire with Bellwood, and it simply goes to point out you ways we’re all the time neck and neck with one another. Everybody is aware of it, and everybody reveals up.”
Rachelle Hopsicker: “When Halee hit that final second shot a pair years again, and simply the gang response. That was wonderful. Every time we play them, it brings all the very best out of every group. I can say it all the time feels nice once you win, and it hurts greater than something once you lose. I get pleasure from them, however they’re aggravating.”
Jim Swaney: “For me, it goes again longer than 4 years. We had battles with these guys earlier than. Karson Swogger’s junior yr (the yr earlier than Campbell and Leidig had been freshmen at Bellwood) they beat us up at our place, and we needed to come down right here and beat them simply to go to the ICC championship. It’s been occurring for a very long time, and they’re an excellent program and so are we. I’ll take plenty of recollections from that. They’ve good hard-nosed children that play arduous, and so will we.”
Alli Campbell: “It’s all the time an excellent recreation after we play them. It’s a battle, it’s thrilling. Each communities come out, and it’s only a enjoyable environment. That’s what I’ve loved most about it. We get an excellent crowd for a women basketball recreation, and that’s thrilling.”
Emilie Leidig: “I play with Hayden and Halee (in AAU), so enjoying in opposition to them is all the time enjoyable. Taking part in with them is for enjoyable. I’ve a lot respect for them. They’re a lot enjoyable to play, and it’s all the time an excellent environment with nice followers and it’s a enjoyable recreation.”
Sakeria Haralson: “It’s all the time loopy. You don’t have these sorts of rivalry video games in all places. We might win, we might lose, but it surely’s all the time recreation and it’s enjoyable. It’s enjoyable to go in opposition to women you play with (in AAU). It makes it extra intense, but additionally makes it extra enjoyable.”