AMBOY – Seemingly every time an Indian Creek player drove to the hoop in Friday night’s Class 1A Amboy Regional final, good things happened.
The majority of the time it was a made basket. If that wasn’t the case, the Timberwolves ended up shooting free throws. Indian Creek even had three three-point plays in the second half of a 61-38 win over Paw Paw. The Timberwolves (21-8) advance to the River Ridge Sectional, where they’ll take on River Ridge at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
“We did a really nice job of moving the basketball, finding open spots and finding open guys,” Indian Creek coach Joe Piekarz said. “I was really pleased with our offensive execution tonight.”
Paw Paw focused on taking away Indian Creek 6-foot-9 center Garrison Govig, which opened up the offense for Garrett Post and David Boehne. Each finished with 17 points.
“They’ve done that the previous two games. We knew if they wanted to spend a lot of time on [Govig], to try and have other guys step up,” Piekarz said. “I thought we did an outstanding job of that tonight.”
Govig added 10 points, putting him over 1,000 for his career, while Noah Holm scored eight.
Fans from both schools packed Amboy’s small gym. There were few seats available and it was a loud atmosphere. The Timberwolves’ win gave them their first regional title since 2011, when Indian Creek won at Amboy on a buzzer beater. This one came a lot easier.
Boehne admitted that in games such as these, nerves will set in at the outset.
“Usually for me, when I just start getting into the zone of a game, just getting the feel of the game, I get all the jitters out,” Boehne said. “I just start playing. You just start having fun.”
Indian Creek led by seven points at halftime before pulling away in the second half. The Timberwolves held a 49-36 lead after the third and allowed only two points in the entire fourth quarter. Piekarz was able to empty his bench in the final minute.
“We knew that we had to play strong defense. ... We knew they wouldn’t go away, so we knew we had to keep on playing,” Boehne said. “We knew they would make their run ... We knew that if we kept on taking it to the hoop and just being strong with the ball, we knew that we’d come out with a win.”