LIVE Districts: Omaha North at Westside

Based on what was done on Friday night, the Westside Warriors boys varsity basketball team will take on the Omaha North Vikings in the A-4 district semifinals. With the Warriors’ coming in to host a district at 16-,6 they are looking to bounce back after a very tough loss in their last regular season to Omaha Central. Omaha North, on the other hand, is coming in at 10-14 but currently sitting on a four-game win streak. The biggest wins on the Vikings resumé this season was beating Omaha South by one point in their second game of the season and Millard North by three points in the middle of December. 

The biggest challenge the Warriors’ have to face is Omaha North senior Wal Chuol, the 6’4 forward at 19 points per game and 6 rebounds per game. This means he must be contained but this isn’t anything the Warriors’ haven’t experienced this season. Westside Head Coach Jim Simons thinks they have played many talented teams and individuals to prepare them for a hopefully long postseason. 

“I think we are definitely battle-tested, we have been in highly competitive games against very good teams. There aren’t a lot of top five or top ten teams that we haven’t played at least once this season. They have prepared us for the rest of our games this season,” Simons said. 

The regular season and the postseason are very different. The regular season is a time to fight for a good district seed and work on any problems or kinks in the team. The postseason is a time to fight for a chance to go to state and perform at when your team is hopefully at its peak. 

“There is a bit more of scouting and gameplan emphasis when it comes to the postseason. The biggest difference between the regular season and postseason is you are more gameplan specific for your opponent,” Simons said. 

Westside starting sophomore Chandler Meeks thinks that if they stay focused and stick to the gameplan that will be the key to success. 

“Staying composed and humble as the week goes on will be huge, and having a solid week of practice which we have. Also, don’t underestimate your opponent, it’s districts time so its win or go home,” Meeks said. 

In the situation where the Warriors can play one of two teams (Bryan or North), they must prepare for both during a hectic and stressful week of practice. 

“We have been working on the offensive and defensive sets that North or Bryan do in practice. This will be able to get as much as prepared as we need to be,” Meeks said. 

Once you get to the postseason you can’t get too ahead of yourself or you may find yourself knocked out early. 

“We take it game by game and we know we can play with anybody and we’ll keep showing that as the season goes on into the playoffs,” Meeks said. 

They will begin district play on Saturday, February 29, 2020, at 5:00 p.m.