The gymnasium at Archbishop Murphy High School is packed. Parents, students, rival fans, and middle school students crowd the stands, waiting for the first of several events on the agenda to begin. Wildcat cheerleaders pass out pom poms as the girls basketball team warms up on the court. The band plays enthusiastically, welcoming each new person that walks in. Energy spills out of every body in the room.
It’s the first home quad night for the Wildcat basketball program. JV girls, JV boys, varsity girls, varsity boys. The Wildcats are taking on the Kings Knights, school rivals within the Cascade Conference, which will be disbanding at the end of this academic year. AMHS is also hosting one of their Middle School Murphy Nights, when middle school students in the area are invited to attend the game and a dance afterwards for free.
The girls are up first for the night. They currently lead the conference undefeated and are expected to make a strong post-season run. When they tip off at 6:30, Maddie Hill (sr), Julia Lucas (so), Megan Dorney (sr), Emily Rodabaugh (jr), and Olivia Riojas (sr) take the court. They play a phenomenal game, and finish the night with a victory over Kings 51-24.
Even more students arrive for the boys game. Members of the DECA club run back and forth between their store and the gym, restocking items as they sell out of refreshments. Cheerleaders hand out the rest of the pom poms to new fans, and alumni greet friends they haven’t seen since leaving for school.
The boys, who defeated Granite Falls earlier in the week, take the court around 8, led by Trey Miller (sr), Jaxon Miller (so), Sage Oliveria (so), Rweha Munyagi (sr), and Dillon Singh-Halpin (jr). Despite a strong effort, the Wildcats fall 59-42 to the Knights.
The next home quad night will take place on Friday, January 19th versus the South Whidbey Falcons, with the girls varsity team starting at 6:30.