Webb rocks Reynolds, wins state championship
Faithful J.F. Webb fans trekked from Oxford to Raleigh Saturday evening, where they loudly screamed, stomped and applauded the school’s boys basketball team to their first 3-A state championship.
In overtime, the Warriors prevailed 73-70, sealed by Mitron Terry’s two foul shots with 2.8 seconds left. (See more in our online sports section).
Fans remained standing, applauding and catching their collective breath as the team was honored after the game.
Vebelous Gregory, originally from Oxford, was at the game supporting her nephew, Tre Wilkerson.
“It was a tight game tonight,” Gregory said. “It had us on our feet the whole time.”
Gregory has attended the last few games, and made it out Saturday night despite an injured arm.
“I was nervous, but I knew they had it. I’m so proud of these guys.”
Nearly three-fourths of the seats in Reynolds Coliseum on the campus of N.C. State University were occupied by individuals sporting red to match their home team. The arena which holds 12,400 people, the former longtime home of N.C. State legends such as Willis Casey and David Thompson, was heavily crowded.
Ricky Givens, athletics director at J.F. Webb said close to 1,700 presale tickets sold at the school.
Prior to the game, Marcus Hicks, of no relation to J.F. Webb’s McDonald’s All-American Isaiah Hicks, prepared to watch his alma mater play for the first time this year.
Marcus graduated from J.F. Webb in 1999, where he played basketball, football, track and baseball. Currently he works as a speed training coach for Webb’s track team and coaches defensive backs for the football team.
“This will be my first time seeing them play, but I’ve heard so much about Isaiah Hicks, and the rest of the team,” Marcus said. “It’s really exciting for Oxford. It’s been a while since a championship team has come through.”
Marcus, who was born and raised in Oxford, now runs a gym on Main Street in the city’s downtown area, was proud to see his former high school recognized for athletics.
“It’s great to see Webb recognized for sports,” Marcus said. “I tried to do as many as I could.”
With 52 seconds left in the second quarter Webb fans erupted as the team scored four points off back-to-back full court breaks.
At the half a sea of red-shirted fans stood to applaud Webb as they trotted to the locker room with a nine-point lead.
While few may have known it, a message board on campus went up Thursday and saluted the state champions. The premature message was gone within hours, replaced by a reference to last week’s regional title.
After Saturday’s thriller, the sign is going to get another update.
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