SHABBONA – After Hinckley-Big Rock’s Jacob Ryan knocked down a 3-pointer to give the Royals a one-point lead early in the fourth quarter, the Indian Creek boys basketball team needed to counter with a run of its own.
The Timberwolves ran off nine consecutive points and the defense didn’t allow another bucket as the Timberwolves won, 50-42, Tuesday night in a Little Ten Conference matchup against their rivals.
“We did a nice job of handling adversity in the second half when [H-BR] took that one point lead and they had a lot of momentum going,” Indian Creek coach Joe Piekarz said. “I was really happy to see how were handled that adversity in the second half.”
Junior center Garrison Govig finished with a game-high 19 points and 11 rebounds to lead Indian Creek (10-5, 4-0).
“We were trying to get me moving a little more tonight so we didn’t have to fight so hard,” Govig said. “[It made] us harder to guard and got the guards open shots.”
The game was close throughout. H-BR led twice in the contest – the first lead was at 17-16 in the second quarter. The second lead was the biggest as the Royals finally got over the hump after cutting the lead to four multiple times.
Trailing 41-35 entering the fourth quarter, H-BR (4-12, 1-2) went on a 7-0 run to give them a 42-41 lead. The run was capped by the aforementioned Ryan 3.
“[To keep it close] really wasn’t the goal. Obviously, you want to be in the game in the fourth quarter,” H-BR head coach Bill Sambrookes said. “That has been a struggle for us all year long. So, this is a game where we were in there.”
Noah Holm ended the Royals’ run with a bucket to take the lead right back.
Next, Govig knocked down a shot in the lane and free throws from Holm, Govig, and Garrett Post closed out the contest.
“Keep battling. They are a very scrappy team and we knew that it would be a tough game tonight. They were not going to go away so we were prepared for that,” Piekarz said. “It was just nice to see when they took the lead, to make some good plays down the stretch and be able to hang on.”
Ryan’s 17 points led the Royals. Dutch Schneeman also finished in double figures with 10 points. Eric Phillips chipped in with 9 points. H-BR will next play Friday against LaMoille.
For Indian Creek Post finished with 10 points and seven rebounds. Nick Baldwin scored a quiet nine points. The Timberwolves dominated the glass by outrebounding the Royals, 32-19.
The Timberwolves will play next Tuesday against Paw Paw.
“The conference games are going to keep getting tougher the more and more we win and the better we play,” Govig said. “So we need to keep playing better and better every game.”