Golden Knights Get Big Win Against Rival Loyola on Senior Night


The St. Francis High School basketball team recognized its seniors on Jan. 29, and then went out and defeated the Loyola Cubs, 71-55.

The moment was special even during the pre-game announcements. In the wake of the tragic death of NBA legend Kobe Bryant and eight others on Jan.26, the entire crowd wore purple and gold in honor of the late star, and the Golden Knight players sported a black stripe across their jerseys in honor of the victims.

As the game got underway, the Golden Knights were sluggish as Loyola’s offense was able to utilize its size advantage in the paint. The Loyola offense was able to take an early lead as the Golden Knights had no answer for the Cubs inside. The first quarter was all the Cubs as they took an early 14-9 lead.

The Golden Knights (22-6 overall, 4-2 in Mission League) wasted no time as UC Irvine commit Andre Henry created fouls as the team inched its way forward to take the lead. Henry helped facilitate the ball smoothly as he dribbled in the paint to draw defenders and dish it to senior Kai Glasson for key three-pointers. The team came back late in the second quarter to take a nine-point lead into the half.

As the third quarter got underway the Cubs worked their way back into the game as they continued to utilize their big men. The Golden Knights, lacking in size, had a difficult time defending the key as junior center Remington Rofer went to the charity stripe four times in the contest. The Golden Knights spread out their offense late with 4:04 in the third quarter to open up for the three ball. That offensive scheme worked out for Coach Todd Wolfson’s squad as it spread the floor for potential shots from beyond the arch. This offensive strategy worked out for the Golden Knights as it allowed senior Jason Gallant to nail two momentum-changing threes.

“Honestly I just feed off my teammates. Andre was going crazy in the first half, he opened me up for a ton of open shots and I made them,” exclaimed Gallant.

Saint Francis was able to end the third quarter with a 55-42 lead.

Going into the fourth quarter the Golden Knights never took their foot off the gas pedal as they created turnovers and converted on several fast break points. As the clock began to wind down and Wolfson knew victory was in sight, he subbed out all the seniors starters. Wolfson hugged all of his seniors and whispered kind words to each of them.

“He just told me ‘thank you’ and that he loved me. [Wolfson] has done so much for me and I honestly can’t put into words what he means to me,” said Henry.

After the conclusion of the game all Wolfson could do was smile. He hugged each of his players during senior night acknowledgements and relished in the atmosphere.

“It’s always mixed emotions, it’s sad because they’re going and it could possibly be one of their last games at home, but also happy because the spot they put us in as a team,” said Wolfson softly.

The Golden Knights are currently seeded second in the Mission League and resumed playing on Feb. 5.