Wiseburn Da Vinci Boys Host Rivals Shalhevet Boys Basketball Team

On Feb. 3 Wiseburn Da Vinci boys basketball (WDV) hosted the Shalhevet boys basketball for their second time meeting this season. The WDV and Shalhevet games are the most anticipated basketball games of the season. 


The result is rarely in favor of WDV, only winning one of nine games they have played against each other. The last time they met was on Jan. 13 in Shalhevets’ house, and the trend continued with Shalhevet taking the win over WDV with a score of 56-40. 


The Feb. 3 game was a different story. The result of the game was 60-51, with WDV taking the win in overtime against Shalhevet for the second time in the schools’ history. 


Both teams reflected on their own style of play instead of focusing on the other team when preparing for this game.


“We watched film of the last time we played each other, we really been focusing on ourselves because when we lose, like tonight, we beat ourselves,” stated Ryan Coleman, Head Coach for Shalhevet. 


Meanwhile, Jeff Amaral, Head Coach for WDV said, “We just preached mental toughness, grit, and hard work tonight, not a lot of change in our game plan, we just asked the guys to bond together.”


The game started off hot with Shalhevet taking the lead, 14-10 in the first quarter. On WDV’s side of the ball, senior Jahari Crawford and sophomore Kevin Moreno each had five apiece to start the game. 


Shalhevet has number 35, Avi Halpert, to thank for a majority of their success, scoring an insane 31 out of 51 points.


“He’s our best player… I thought they did a really good job of taking him out of getting open looks, he never got to his sweet spot,” said Coleman.


For a player out of his sweet spot, he hit some great shots, some even from beyond the official NBA 3-point line; it was like he couldn’t miss. 


“They have a fantastic player Avi Halpert, number 35, we really keyed in on him, and we did a terrific job,” said Amaral.


Shalhevet held the lead at the beginning of the second quarter by four, the score being 14-10. The teams were going shot for shot in the second quarter with 12 points on both sides of the ball, holding it to a four-point game at the end of the second half. The second half ended 26-22 with Shalhevet still in the lead. 


Jayce Johnson, a senior at WDV, had half of the team’s points for the second quarter. Following him were Ayman Suliman, Amir Grant, and Andrew Cardenas with two points each to make up the other half. 


The trend continued going into the second half of the game, with Johnson scoring seven of the team’s 16 points for the third quarter and Alonzo Gonzalez, Cardenas, and Suliman scoring three points each. 


For the remainder of the game, WDV continued to play as a unit and took the game to overtime. Johnson and Suliman had four-piece in overtime with Gonzalez having three points and Grant having one point. 


Amaral stated, “We felt that the team bonded together, drove the ship together, the message in the locker room is that it didn’t matter who got the credit tonight, all that mattered was the Wolves walked off winners.” 


Amaral credited his team’s win with their ability to play together.


Suliman started off the game with no points but was the second-highest scorer for his team. “Scoring is not the biggest thing for me, we got the dub that’s all that’s important to me,” he stated.


Following that point, Johnson also credits his team saying, “I think we played together you know, unselfish, guys played their role, we didn’t care who put the ball in the basket, you know we played as a unit, you know that’s what we love to see.”