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Basketball: Horizon boys end year with loss, but memories of wild run remain

The season ended in a loss, but Horizon Christian Academy boys basketball head coach Damon Taylor can't help but marvel at the journey that took the Warriors there. 

"What a roller coaster," Taylor said on Tuesday. 

The Warriors lost to Shiloh Hills Christian 52-35 this past Saturday in the GICAA state title game. It was Horizon's third loss of the season to the Challengers, but the margin was the smallest of any of those games. 

And while they couldn't fully overcome Shiloh Hills' tricky full-court press in that game, Horizon overcame no small share of challenges earlier on in the postseason. Heading into the region tournament, they lost Evan Rees and Pablo Marrero to the flu. That contributed to the Warriors' fall to a No. 3 seed in the state playoffs and put them on the road to Valdosta to open against Highland Christian Academy. 

They won that game, 60-57. Then they beat Ashtree Learning Academy 50-49, and then beat Covenant Christian Academy 50-44 to move on to the state championship game. 

The run had an unhappy ending there, denying Horizon its third straight state title, but Taylor doesn't have any hard feelings looking back. 

"This group faced more adversity than any of the teams I’ve coached here," he said. "And they just overcame, every single time."