INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.-- Pike's history-making appearance in the State Championship has caught many by surprise- even their head coach is pinching himself.
“I sat at home the other night and I was just looking at my wife saying, ‘I can’t believe this is happening to us,’” Pike girls head basketball coach Bob Anglea said.
Before this season, the Pike girls had never made it past Regional.
“No pressure on us, we’re just coming out every night and just playing as hard as we can,” Anglea said.
Just one year ago, the Red Devils’ season was cut short.
“After last year, a lot of people doubted us,” Pike junior forward Michaela White said.
A fight during a game against Ben Davis resulted in a season ending suspension from the IHSAA and motivated the Pike ladies to redeem themselves in a return to the court.
“To know that we’re going to state, it’s like, ‘Wow, I can’t believe that we’re going,’ because after last year and now making a comeback, it’s just amazing,” White said.
“These kids are all talented, great kids who just do what we ask them to do and work hard every day,” Anglea said. “So the credit is to them.”
Capturing a state title would not only solidify this team’s place in school history, but also, for these athletes, prove what they’ve accomplished over this past season and what they’re capable of, both on and off the court.
“Pike is basketball. That’s who we are and what we do,” Anglea said. “These girls’ lives are basketball, and, you’re going to get me a little teary-eyed, but I love them and I want all of them to be successful in life. And that’s the thing for me, that’s why I coach.”
Pike will face Homstead in the 4A championship game on Saturday, Feb. 25 at 8:15 p.m. at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.