Boys Basketball to Take on Division 1 Commit, Top Ten Matchup Tuesday


Yamilett Ramirez

Sophomore Chandler Meeks handles the ball against Creighton Prep earlier this season.

Following a snow day across all of Omaha last Friday, Westside’s top ten matchup against Bellevue West was moved to today, Tuesday, January 21st. After thrashing Creighton Prep 85-61 and beating Elkhorn South 63-47, the Warriors took down the Lincoln East Spartans this past Saturday 66-56. With that win, they are on a four-game win streak and looking to keep their momentum going into the back half of the season.

This season, an ongoing possible issue for the Warriors is the fact that they don’t have much height compared to their opponents, and they have to overcome them and adapt to what they have. Westside head coach Jim Simons said he has looked at their strengths and determined what type of team they are going to be this season. 

“We’re a quick team, shoot and handle the ball well and generally able to put multiple scorers on the floor. Obviously, our lack of height has made rebounding and post defense a concern, but we have continued to work on it every week,” Simons said.

At this point in the season, the Warriors are playing against some of the best teams and individuals. Bellevue West, who is ranked fifth in Class A and owns a record of 8-2, is averaging close to 63 points per game. The Thunderbirds are led by the Fidler brothers who are averaging a combined 25 points per game and Wisconsin commit Chucky Hepburn, who is also averaging just about 18 on his own. Simons said he feels that now, with multiple top ten games under their belt, they feel more comfortable in big games.

“We have played so many good teams this season and we have a very tough schedule so we are used to it by now,” Simons said. “There are so many talented players and quality teams this year in boys basketball. Bellevue West is a very good team and has outstanding players, but we are used to playing good players and good teams.”

Earlier this season, on December 7th the Warriors and Thunderbirds matched-up at Lincoln Northeast High School. In that game, the two teams went back and forth for all four quarters, but a sluggish fourth-quarter defensive effort allowed the Thunderbirds to pull away for the 69-62 win. Sophomore Chandler Meeks, who throughout the year has been known for his defensive prowess, said he felt the teams’ energy and effort has grown since that game.

“Just getting our effort right. At the start of the season, our effort was kind of down but since we showed that we can beat any team we’re ready,” Meeks said. “We just need to pay more attention to details and just close out things a lot better.”

Tonight’s top ten matchup starts at following the conclusion of the girls game and can be viewed live on Westside Wired and Warrior Television.