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  • Eve Rebora

Walls Basketball Season in Review: One Step Closer This Year

The boys basketball team huddles during the halftime of their game vs. Anacostia / Credits: Nadia Lytle

The basketball season has recently come to an end, and players are now reflecting on a series of ups and downs.

For both boys’ and girls’ teams, access to sports facilities continued to be a problem. Van Harlee (‘24) shared that the boys’ team struggled with “not having practice time in any gym throughout the city.’’ The team eventually was able to go back and forth between practicing at Hardy Middle School and the old Banneker recreation center, but sometimes had to resort to “practice in the auditorium” of Banneker.

The girls’ team experienced similar setbacks. Nonetheless, both the boys and girls team achieved some big wins this season.

Early in the winter, the boys team pulled out a tight win in a scrimmage against sports powerhouse Georgetown Day School f finishing the game 56-54, an impressive result giving them confidence and momentum leading into DCIAA games. In another nail-biter, the team took home a win against Eastern, with a final score of 62-59. Their record was enough to qualify them for DCSAA states for the first time.

Behind these successes was a team that only grew closer throughout the season. Harlee said his favorite part of the season was “the laughs in the locker room,” as Chidire Nwokwu (‘25) “always has everyone laughing.” The Varsity team has become quite tight-knit, despite having an even mix of players from all 4 grade levels. Harlee said that they’ve “grown from a group of individual players into a team” and that’s what allowed for their success this season.

Despite some major successes, the boys’ team did come up short in several games. Harlee said, “we lost a couple of close games and let a couple of games get out of hand that we shouldn’t have.” However, the boys still managed to qualify for DCSAA quarter-finals, a huge improvement upon earlier seasons. Unfortunately, up against Ballou High School, the SWW boys fell short with a season-ending score of 56-48. Despite not achieving the result they wanted, they are proud of their progress this year and look to advance even farther in states next year.

The girls similarly fought hard throughout their season, coming up short to qualify for states but putting up some impressive numbers. They showed off their potential with a few big wins against Bard, Bell, Ballou and more, all of which they won by over 10 points. Team captain Daria Flabbi-Fruttero (‘25) credits these victories to the team spirit. Hours spent practicing together brought the group together and the team culture became “really supportive and fun,” though the team still knew when to “get serious.” Regardless of the season’s outcomes, the team is certain they want to keep this same team culture going into next year.

A few narrow losses throughout the season led to players being dissatisfied with the team’s results. Flabbi-Fruttero explained, “we struggled to create our own energy during games. We had some really close winnable games but unfortunately we accepted defeat too early sometimes,” leading the team to fail to qualify for states. The team works to overcome challenges, including having a team full of varying skill levels and experience. Some team members have played for years, and others, including Flabbi-Fruttero, just joined the game in highschool. Regardless, their motivation remains high.

Flabbi-Fruttero shared “with the exception of our sole senior… we will all be hopefully returning” with the same goals in mind.

Every year both the boys and girls teams bring a little bit more of a competitive edge to the league, coming one step closer to dominating. Will next year finally be their year?


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