The Poteau 5th Grade Basketball team made a big accomplishment. They have played in the ten-team River Valley Basketball League this season. Teams in the League are Mountainburg, Cedarville, Union Christian Academy, Immaculate Conception 1, Immaculate Conception 2, Alma, Van Buren 1, Van Buren 2, Westside, and Poteau.
The 5th grade Poteau Pirates went 11-1 this year. Their only loss came earlier in the season by one point.
The 5th grade Pirates became League Champions in their River Valley Basketball League end-of-season tournament over the week-end.
Last year the team had a 7-5 record, but this year the boys were bound and determined to win it all.
“It’s a ten-team league and to come out on top sure is a great accomplishment,” said coach Lyle Whitworth. “I'm super proud of these kids; it wasn't easy what they did.”
In the end-of-season tournament, the Pirates beat Van Buren in the first round 41 -15 and then in the 2nd round beat Alma 28 to 26 and then the championship game.
“The key to the victory was the fast breaks and the rebounds,” said Whitworth. “The final game was against Immaculate Conception, a private school in Fort Smith, and they attempted to press the Pirates in the last quarter. The Pirates could break the press and score the points they needed to win the championship.”
The final score of the championship game was 35-33.
“At one time the Pirates were 9 points down but they never gave up. They kept on fighting and kept on believing,” said Whitworth. “At the end of the game the Pirates were being fouled in the paint, and with great free throw shooting, they took the lead and never gave it back.”
“Every player was a huge part to our success and these boys play as one unit like no young team that I've ever seen. I'm very proud of these boys and I look forward to seeing what they accomplish in the future and I'm very thankful I was a part of it.”
Good Job 5th grade Pirates!!
This team is Coached by Lyle Whitworth, head coach, and Ronda Tucker, assistant coach.