A winning record will stand the test of time with Riverside High School's senior basketball side going out on a high.
Winning three consecutive top-age state championships from 2017, the Mandy Gibson-coached unit finished the job at Basketball Tasmania's event last weekend.
Consisting of Lachie Brewer, Aiden Gibson, Lachie May, Campbell Atkins, Caleb Bedford, Arie Schoenmaker, Daniel Hawkins and Will Bottle, the bulk of the team have played together since grade six, with Bedford and Hawkins joining the side in high school.
"When that specific group that won on the weekend got together in grade eight, they made a deal that they'd all wear headbands," Gibson said.
"By the end of the first quarter they were all sick to death of the headbands, couldn't stand them, and ripped them all off because they were driving them insane and then played on.
"But it was that camaraderie and that team building thing and it was like 'we are all doing this, we're all in this together' and they've had that sort of mentality since they got together."
While the side has seen different configurations take the court depending on the year, the group started with five of them winning the 2014 division three regionals in grade three.
Gibson, who as a player was a member of the Launceston Tornadoes' 1995 national championship team, coached some of them to another regionals win the following year before losing the state final by 12 points.
Since then, the state title has rarely left the group's grasp with wins in 2017, 2019 and 2021, with the trifecta secured in a 75-60 win over St Patrick's.
Given it was their last game together, you could forgive the crew for being emotional but Gibson said because they were playing against a fellow Northern side (all four semi-final spots were occupied by Northern schools), the emotions weren't as high.
"In grade eight, the state grand final was against Burnie and we were down by five in the last minute of the game and Aiden came up clutch, hit a three and then a two to take it into overtime," she said.
"Then we won it by two points or something dramatic in overtime and that was crazy, whereas I think the game on Sunday against St Pats, we were very much in control of it from early on."
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