By SAMANTHA SMITH, Staff Writer | Published December 30, 2021
ATLANTA—On the last day of the fall semester, the Golden Lions of St. Pius X High School took on the Titans of Northview High School of Duluth in varsity basketball Dec. 17.
The game was off to a slow start in the first quarter for the girls’ varsity team, with St. Pius X in the lead 8-0. But after adjustments made in the second quarter, St. Pius X scored 26 unanswered points against Northview.
In the second quarter, “we returned to doing the things we like to emphasize on both offense and defense and that allowed us to extend the lead,” said Kyle Snipes, the girls’ varsity basketball coach for 13 seasons.
Able to keep the lead for the rest of the game, the St. Pius X girls’ team defeated Northview 42-10. St. Pius X junior Alex Umpierre led the team in baskets, scoring seven points. Senior Alexa Kenah and junior Kelly Stephenson scored six points each.
This was the fourth win in a row for the Golden Lions, bringing their record to 6-4 for the season.
“We really just look to improve every day so that we are playing our best basketball at the end of the season,” said Snipes.
The boys’ varsity basketball team lost nine seniors last year, but players worked hard over the summer and fall to improve, said Aaron Parr, head coach of the team for 11 seasons.
In the boys’ varsity game against Northview, the Titans scored a two-point basket at the buzzer ending the first quarter, bringing the score to 16-17 with St. Pius X in the lead. Northview was able to get ahead of St. Pius X in the second quarter, but the Golden Lions were able to regain the lead and keep it for the duration of the game. St. Pius X defeated Northview 73-44.
St. Pius X senior Eamonn Kenah led the team in points, scoring 19. Senior Grant Rowe scored a career high of 14 points, including four three-point shots. This was the eighth win in a row for the boys’ varsity basketball team this season, bringing their record to 8-1.
Using the abilities God gives to team members, playing fearlessly and full of confidence are the goals, said Parr.
“I think if we do these three things, we will improve as the season goes on,” he noted.
St. Pius X High School will host and compete in its annual Christmas Classic basketball tournament Dec. 28-30, which includes 16 girls’ and boys’ varsity teams from seven states.