Basketball season comes to bittersweet end

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Amber Deavers | File

Amber Deavers, Editor

As very few students sat in class Friday February 13, they looked up and down the halls and around their classrooms to see maybe 1 or 2 other students. That is because over half of the community: students, teachers, staff, family, and friends of the Chelsea Hornets drove 2 hours to watch the boys basketball team play Woodlawn in the first round of the sweet sixteen playoffs.

As students arrived in droves, at 1:00pm on Friday, the student section of Jacksonville State University soon overflowed. As the game began, the Baum Squad distributed pompoms for the students to cheer on their Hornets. Chants and cheers were screamed throughout the game as the Hornets faced Woodlawn in a nail biting game to the very end. There was even some competitive jeering against the Woodlawn cheer squad through out the game.

The Chelsea Hornets started the game well with an early lead of 8-2, 6 of the 8 points coming from Senior Darrell Foster. Foster hit two 3 pointers to start the game. However, at the end of the first quarter, the Woodlawn Colonels came back to tie the score at 20-20. The Hornets failed to match the Colonels in the second quarter resulting in a first half score of 33-40.

Looking around the gymnasium the dominant color was Chelsea blue, in the stands, on the floor, and in our hearts. Many students went to the game for a free pass out of class. However, they ended up cheering on their team until the very end.

Coach Baumbaugh and the 2014-2015 Boys Basketball team has given the community of Chelsea, Alabama a wonderful season. The public is so very proud of the Chelsea Hornets. Many people took off of work to go and support the Basketball team. The stands were full of screaming parents and friends, supporting their Hornets, praying for victory.

The Baum Squad, or student section, has followed the Hornets to every game and were especially loud against the Colonels. Senior Casey Foshee, lead the Baum Squad with chants ranging from the roller coaster to ‘It’s Great to be a Chelsea Hornet’.

The game was especially meaningful to the seniors of the Boys Basketball team. Not only was this game the farthest Chelsea Basketball has gone in almost 30 years; it is the highest honor the Hornets have ever accomplished. It was also their last game as a Chelsea Hornet.

As the final minutes ticked away, Coach Baumbaugh slowly pulled his seniors out for a final hug and encouraging words for his elite team that brought him this far. Many members of the crowd looked on with heavy hearts as the team realized their victory was slipping away, and they were in their final seconds of their high school basketball career.

As the game came to an end the students of Chelsea High School stayed to give the 2014-2015 Boys Basketball team a standing ovation for their display of dedication and talent throughout the year. The students’ optimism never faltered even as Woodlawn delivered a devastating loss to the Chelsea Hornets in a 66-58 win.

For the rest of the team this moment will be what drives them to practice and play even harder for years to come. This was the moment that they realized a group of ball players from Chelsea, Alabama can play with the best of the best and hold their own. The Hornets finish their season an even 16-16.