WCHS’ varsity girls take it to states


Photo Courtesy of Dylan Rosen

The WCHS girls varsity basketball team smiles after a hard loss against Glen Burnie at the Class 4A MPSSAA state championship.

By Jordan Pashkoff, Editor-in-Chief

Three years ago the WCHS varsity girl’s basketball team was boarding the team bus to take them to the state semifinal basketball game when they were suddenly halted. It was March 2020 and what would later become the COVID-19 pandemic was at its beginning. Uncertainty and anxiety clouded the air in many aspects of daily life and events were being canceled left and right. For the varsity girl’s basketball team though, their minds were not on COVID, but on the State Championship game they were about to play.

That basketball game was postponed by the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association (MPSSAA) before the entire state tournament was later canceled due to the pandemic. All four teams who had made it to the semifinals were declared co-champions, but for the WCHS team who was favored to win it all, it was a disappointing end to the season.

Since that run in 2020, the Bulldogs had not made it back to the state semifinals. This season they were determined to do so – and they did. After winning the Regional Championship for the third time in a row against Wootton High School, the team played a successful state quarterfinal game against Parkdale High School with a 66-43 win.

On March 7, the Bulldogs played Western High School and took home a commanding win of 61-44 to advance them to the championship game. Point guard and senior captain Chelsea Calkins contributed 20 points and senior captain Dillan George finished with 23 points. Each win throughout the season led to the MPSSAA Class 4A State Championship game on March 10 at the University of Maryland’s Xfinity Center against Glen Burnie High School.

“I think our team chemistry and work ethic was the key to our success this season,” George said. “I feel like we have worked so hard to develop together, and gotten so close on and off the court. I’m so proud of how far we’ve come together.”

The game started at 8 p.m. and immediately was a fast-paced, tight game that had fans on the edge of their seats throughout each quarter. The packed student section was just as excited to support their team as they loudly cheered for every shot, steal and pass.

“It was so much fun to watch the girl’s team play at UMD and on an actual Big 10 court. The student section was pretty full and there were people from all different grades there to support the team,” WCHS senior Lily Kriendler, who attended the championship game, said. “Everyone was on their feet and cheering, the atmosphere was really exciting.”

WCHS was up by four by the end of the third, making the fourth and final quarter a high-pressure and anxiety-inducing end of the game. After a hard-fought eight minutes and a tight score throughout the game, the Bulldogs lost to the Gophers 43-40 after a series of free throws and fouls.

“Playing on the UMD court was really exciting, but definitely different from playing in a high school gym,” WCHS senior basketball player Allison Coleman said. “The lighting was much brighter, and the depth perception, while you are shooting, is much different because there isn’t a wall behind the net.”

Even though the Bulldogs did not take home the championship, it was still a game full of wins for players and the team as a whole. George scored her 1000th career point and it was the first time the team made it to the State Championship since 2003.

“Just playing at the Xfinity Center is an incredible experience that most athletes aren’t able to experience,” George said. “I am so grateful our team made it far enough to have that opportunity.”

For the seven seniors on the team, it was a bittersweet end of the season, but having given their all for the past few months and working hard at every practice, game and scrimmage, they end their WCHS basketball career with their heads high and proud.

“As a team, I think we did really well in continuously supporting each other and pushing each other to work our hardest,” Coleman said. “Obviously we all have a lot of memories since we’ve spent so much time together these past few months. Personally, my favorite memories are the simpler ones, like our talks on the bus to a game or team dinners.”