Senior Ryan Gordan, whose team went 8-18 as a freshman, said, “When I first came in to Westside, I didn’t know if we were going to win basketball games at all. Everything we’ve been through has been about making it to this page. I never thought this would happen, but it really happened so all I can say is thank God.”
Butler (22-7) raced out to a 22-11 lead after the first quarter, but Westside clawed back to get within 38-32 at halftime. Westside took the lead for good on a 3-pointer by Amauri Tillman, part of a 10-0 third-quarter run that tilted the table in its direction.
Ewing said, “This team we’ve got, we’ve been playing together since we were little. Everybody is like a brother. We’ve had to fight together and stay together.”
“We had to work hard to get back in this game,” Westside coach Jerry Hunter said. “And we knew we had to fight like dogs.”
Butler was led by Gemaurean Belton with 12 points, Elijah Martinez with 11 points and seven rebounds, and Chance Finklin with 10 points and two blocks.
Westside also got 14 points and four assists from Tillman, 10 points and 11 rebounds from Khalon Hudson and nine points and three assists from Demarco Middleton.