Admiral hoop seniors end ‘special’ careers

MARYVILLE — Having just finished his first, and only, season of high school basketball, Farragut High School senior Jude Wren said he “had expectations of what the team would be like, like the brotherhood that would form.

“But this season just exceeded that by miles and miles,” the senior wing added about the 2018-19 Admirals, who under second-year head coach Jon Higgins finished 13-18 after a 66-49 District 4-AAA tournament quarterfinal loss to West Friday night, Feb. 15, at William Blount High School.

It’s where Wren and four other Admiral seniors played their final high school basketball game.

“I’ve learned so much about every single person in that locker room,” Wren added. “I’ve enjoyed every single second of every single practice and morning shoot-arounds.”

“It’s definitely been a great four years,” said Will Brown, senior standout wing who scored 13 points against the Runnin Rebels. “I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I’ve had a pretty good career. It’s been a great time with these guys, definitely.”

“You spend so much time with these guys you kind of, like, form such a special relationship,” senior guard Mack Ratliff said. “They’re like your best friends at the end of the day.”

“I’ve been playing with these guys most of my life, and it’s just weird to see it all come full circle,” said senior wing Andrew Howell, who scored three points against West. “Having a bond with teammates, friends, coaches is something special.

“It started with coach (Higgins) holding us accountable, like being at practice on time and working our tails off,” he added.

“It’s been the best four years of basketball in my life. I couldn’t ask for anything else.”

Also playing his final FHS game was Owen Blake, senior post, who scored two points.

“The fight that my kids have shown all season, and in this game, has been unbelievable,” Higgins said. “… I’m extremely proud of all of them.”

Dillon Atwell, freshman guard, led the Admirals in scoring with 15 points. Robby Geron, junior guard, added nine points.