Boys basketball ready for regionals

The Atoms look to make a strong push as they head into the regional tournament.
They open up regional play at home against Alexandria City on Monday (results not available at pub date).
Alexandria City is 10-10 on the year and 6-8 in district play.
“Going into the first round of regionals, the team has to be focused. We have to practice well and execute our game plan as we head into the regional tournament,” junior Steven Liu said.
Preparing for the regional tournament is extremely important for the Atoms if they want to go far in the tournament, and possibly make states.
In the regional tournament, the team will have to play many games in a short period of time, so it is important for the team to come prepared as possible.
The first regional tournament game will most likely be the only home game the Atoms have, so it is important for the team to be mentally ready because if they win the first round game, they will most likely have to travel to an opposing school.
“If we want to go far in the regional tournament, we will have to face good teams, so it is important that we stay mentally ready,” junior guard Davida Raharinaivo said.
The Atoms have a 14-8 record on the year, and are the 3rd seed in the National District.
Despite the Atoms strong regular season record, the team knows that that doesn’t matter as they head into regionals.
“It is important for us to have the right mentality if we want to win regionals,” junior Danish Naveed said. “We have gone on long win streaks before, and I believe that we have what it takes to go on another win streak and perform well at regionals.”
The Atoms have been on multiple win streaks throughout the season, including a 5 game win streak near the end of the regular season, and a 6 game win streak in the middle of the season, which included winning the George Long Holiday tournament.
This level of play is what the Atoms will need as they head into regionals.
The team is coming off of an unfortunate 56-40 loss in the National District semi-finals to Edison on wednesday.
The Atoms played well on the defensive end. The Atoms held Edison to 18-51 from the field. However, the Atom’s defensive effort was not enough to get the job done.
The Team could not get their offense going, as the Atoms shot 14-57 from the field, and 6-12 from the free throw line.
“Our offensive struggles really held us back. The team missed good shots that we normally would make. It was an unfortunate night for the team to shoot poorly,” Raharinaivo said.
Despite this unfortunate loss, the Atoms started off the district tournament with a win.
The Atoms beat Thomas Jefferson in the first round of the district tournament.
The team played solid on both offense and defense as they cruised to a double digit win.
“We moved the ball well in the win against TJ. We took advantage of their defense and kept a solid lead throughout the whole game,” Liu said.
Despite the unfortunate district tournament semi-final loss, the Atoms are looking to make a deep run in the regional tournament.
If the team loses at the regional tournament, then the season is officially over.
“Nobody wants our season to end, so we have to do whatever it takes to win the regional tournament,” Liu said.