T-birds hold on to beat Warriors
The North Central boys’ basketball team held off a late surge by North Knox, beating the Warriors, 54-48, Tuesday night in Farmersburg.
Up 38-14 early in the third quarter, the Thunderbirds watched their lead evaporate, as the Warriors went on a 15-0 run that pulled them within nine points a minute into the final period.
North Knox was able to cut the margin to two points with two minutes to go in the game, but the T-birds responded with two big baskets from sophomore forward Mitchell Peterson. North Central hit 5-of-8 free throws in the final minute to secure the win.
“I thought we played probably our best basketball of the year in those first two quarters and two or three minutes into the third, and then we just kind of forgot what got us there,” North Central head coach Ryan Kamman said. “We definitely lost our intensity on defense and part of that was us turning the ball over.”
The Warriors’ only lead of the game was at 4-2 early in the first quarter. After North Knox sophomore Mark Martin scored a minute-and-a-half into the second quarter, the Warriors did not score again until a minute and 43 seconds into the third. Meanwhile, the T-birds had scored 14 unanswered points before going through a drought of their own that lasted 5 minutes and 49 seconds.
Luckily for the T-birds, they found some offense in time to keep the Warriors from taking the lead.
“It’s good to get a win,” Kamman said. “That’s two in a row for us. Hopefully, we can make it three on Friday.”
Gavin Stanifer led the Thunderbirds with 14 points, followed by Andrew Nikirk with 12, Tod Lebeda with nine and Peterson with eight.
“We have a lot of guys that are able to put the ball in the basket right now,” Kamman said. “It’s nice for us to have. Hopefully that can continue. We have guys looking to score right now.”
North Central’s junior varsity squad lost the early game, 48-21.
The T-birds (4-8, 0-3 SWIAC) travel to Parke County Friday for a 7:30 p.m. game against the Riverton Parke Panthers.
“They have a couple good guards and one guy who can score inside a little bit,” Kamman said.” Hopefully, these guys can come out with some intensity on the defensive end. I think it’s (Riverton Parke’s) homecoming Friday night. It’s always nice to spoil those if you can.”
L. Drake 2 0-0 4, Peterson 2 4-6 8, Lebeda 3 3-6 9, Nikirk 3 5-6 12, Stanifer 5 1-2 14, Jewell 0 2-3 2, Stucker 2 0-0 5. Totals — 17 15-23 54.
Alsman 3 0-0 8, Graman 5 0-0 11, Bond 1 0-0 3, Meurer 6 6-6 19, Lamb 2 1-3 5, Martin 1 0-0 2. Totals — 18 7-9 48.
North Knox 9 2 16 21 — 48
North Central 14 16 8 16 — 54
3-Point Goals — North Central 5 (Stanifer 3, Stucker, Nikirk), North Knox 5 (Alsman 2, Graman, Bond, Meurer). Total Fouls — North Central 19, North Knox 13.