Kenny Kramek used to be able to joke with his Poolesville High School boys’ basketball team that he was the only one in the gym with a division championship under his belt. Well, those days are long gone.
A 72-46 win against Seneca Valley on Feb. 19 sealed up the Falcons’ second straight Montgomery 3A/2A Division title, the first time in school history they have won consecutive titles.
“I’d joke with the kids that I was the only one with a division championship and they would say back ‘No way, no way, we’re going to get one,’” Kramek said. “They took a lot of pride, that core group of kids — Trevor [Stottlemyer], Craig [Morton], Andy [Baker], Anthony [Papagjika] — they definitely took a lot of pride in themselves.
“The development of Trevor has been incredible, Andy is as solid of a basketball player you’re going to find, Craig has been our biggest surprise… and Anthony can go off at any time.”
Kramek said that Poolesville may have won back-to-back division championships — “or whatever the equivalent was” — in 1966 and 1967, but the setup of the divisions was completely different. So in the modern era of Montgomery basketball, Poolesville has etched itself into the books.
Early into the season, with just a 3-1 record to show at the time, Jewish Day coach Dave McCloud said he had a promising bunch on his hands. His Lions delivered on that promise, going 19-0 in Potomac Valley Athletic Conference play to win the regular season title despite graduating leading scorer Ethan Walfish from last year’s 18-5 team.
Danny Kravitz, who scored his 1,000th career point in a Feb. 10 victory over Washington Christian, partnered with freshman Bryan Knapp to average 28.1 points between them while senior Jon Prigal added another 12.9 to the mix.
The first conference loss of the season, though, came at an ill-time, in the PVAC semifinals at the hands of St. Anselm’s, which nixed all hopes of a regular season and tournament sweep of conference titles.
Covenant Life, meanwhile, rode the Brandon Thompson train all the way to the tournament title. In three playoff games, the 5-foot-8 guard scored 29 (on Washington International), 41 (Field) and 25 in Saturday night’s championship game against St. Anselm’s.
“He’s phenomenal, phenomenal,” coach Alan Snyder said. “He’s the best offensive player in the PVAC. We got him playing defense, we got him passing the ball. He is the most improved player on the team, I’d say in the league. That’s how far he has come in terms of defensive technique, passing the ball, working as a team. You got a guy who is playing team basketball and when you need it can score 41 points.”
Kennedy at Walt Whitman, TBA
The two played as recently as Feb. 21, a 46-30 Whitman win, but nothing was on the line then.