Friarside Chat: GA Inter-Ac Champions

Jake Stokes

Malvern 55 Germantown Academy 52

By: Jake Stokes and Matt Greskoff


Where do I begin, my ears are still ringing and I have yet to fully regain my voice.  FriarNation was out in full force having the stands filled in the fourth quarter of the jv game. After the rally towels were handed out, and the water-resistant paint was put on, senior good goalie Matt Greskoff who looked like he was dressed for a tennis match for the white out, got the Nation pumped for the game with an “I Believe” chant.  As if the students weren’t pumped up enough for the game senior co-captain Brendan Kilpatrick, who was honored for scoring 1,000 points before the game, came up with a thunderous put back dunk to have the student section erupt.  Then using both the metal and the glass of the backboard fellow senior co-captain Steve Perpiglia got a bucket to drop.  After a hard fought first quarter the Friars found themselves ahead 16-7.

Now while GA’s students (got to give them props for getting that many students to an away game) tried to start some chants in the first quarter I think they started to realize that they were getting drowned out by the largest FriarNation of the season.  So the “we can’t hear you” chants eventually ensued… The best back-and-forth of chants had little to do with the game itself.  GA began chanting “we have girls,” and some genius under-classman from the middle of the Nation began a “we have Jesus” chant, while the seniors were trying to think of an appropriate and non-controversial response.

Now on the court we had another hard fought battle with GA knocking down most, if not all, of their free throws.  The three also played a big role for GA, however the Friars capitalized on the 11 first half turnovers GA had.  The Friars were looking for a deflection into the basket with 0.2 seconds left in the half. The situation was similar to the teams’ previous game where Tom Pitt made a half-court shot that was disallowed.  This time, however, Kilpatrick was fouled on the inbound and was sent to the line. This gave the Friars a 10 point lead at half with a score of 30-20.

During the 2nd half, Malvern did not commit a turnover until midway through the 4th quarter and had some big rebounds. Tom Pitt had 6 reb, Dennis Gabert had 7, and Perpiglia added 8 more.  In the third the game seemed to slow down a bit ending 41-30.

John Oakley took control of the audio system at the quarter break and put on a crowd favorite “Levels,” which got the crowd rejuvenated and pumped up for the final 8 minutes of the game that stood between Malvern and an Inter-Ac title. As the time ticked down in the fourth quarter FriarNation got louder and louder.  Alumnus Brian Swanick ’11, a previous leader of the Nation, even came over to give another inspiring speech to the students.  Now while GA might have been making a run at the end I don’t think a loss ever entered anyone’s mind. It felt like Malvern’s game all the way through. With under a minute leftJake Stokes started the “Winning team, Losing team” chant and then latter followed with the “If your Winning and you Know it chant,” which the GA students took quite well. Then in the final 30 sec all the students joined in the signing of the alma matter.  While FriarNation was told not to storm the court, there was no stopping hundreds of students ready to celebrate with their team after they won the 2nd of back-to-back championships. The massive pile-up in the center of the court was a result of hundreds of elated fans with absolutely no regard for the well-being of their bodies.

The on court celebration then ensued as senior Gus Carlin (Note: the original GUS/IV sign was found and placed in the trophy case) cut down the first net. Then the celebration moved to the other side of the court as one by one each player cut a piece of the net.  During this time “Levels” was played again and a concert like atmosphere was created for over a half hour.  This is the first time Malvern has won back-to-back titles since Fran Dunphy was coach in 1976-77.  The Friars hit the home court for the last time this season in the quarter finals of the PA independent schools tournament after getting a first round bye as the #1 seed they will face Perkiomen on Tuesday at 4pm.