Timberwolves Have One Slip Away in Loss to Arcola Monday Night

January 28, 2015

Makes two tournament losses in a row

By Matt Kracht
NP Sports Reporter

After falling to Decatur LSA Saturday in the opening round of the LOVC tournament 78-62, Okaw Valley was next paired with no. two seeded Arcola, who fought back from a 30-25 halftime deficit to defeat OV 66-55 in a physical contest. Peyton Hagerman lit up the scoreboard with 20 first half points finishing with a game high 28.
Arcola opened up the game with a six point run forcing a quick OV timeout at the five minute mark. Hagerman scored the first points of the night for Okaw Valley, and Devon Still added a layup to cut the lead to 8-4 at the four minute mark. Still would finish with 10 points on the night, but Arcola answered with a run pushing the lead to 17-9 in the blink of an eye with 2:30 remaining in the first. Hagerman then found Logan Tipsword under the basket to stop the bleeding and added a layup on the next possession to cut the lead to 19-13 with under a minute remaining. Read More

Lady Timberwolves Fall 54-48 in Disappointing Tourney Loss to Cerro Gordo Bement

January 28, 2015

By Matt Kracht
NP Sports Reporter

Coming off a tough defeat in the first round of the LOVC conference tourney Okaw Valley’s struggles continued Thursday, falling in what was a back and forth contest. Okaw Valley built up a nine point lead with just two minutes left in the first half but were unable to hold on. Paige Robinson had 11 points to go along with five steals. However, Cerro Gordo was able to hold offensive threat Amanda McClain to just four points.
After the loss head coach Don Gardner was looking forward to playing on their home court for a change. “This was our third trip up here. We had to come up here twice, and we had to play Argenta before the tournament. So we are ready to get back home I think. We get to play Cerro Gordo Monday at our place so that will be a nice rematch.” Read More

Molzen’s Monster Performance Not Enough as Redskins Lose 48-35 to Bulldogs

January 28, 2015

Williams, St. T outpace Sullivan

By Matt Kracht
NP Sports Reporter

Ty Molzen scored 18 points to go with eight rebounds in a competitive defeat versus the St Teresa Bulldogs Friday Night. Head coach Chester Reeder praised Molzen’s growth as a player after the game. “He keeps getting better and better. I challenged him early in the year, and he has definitely raised his level. He is rebounding like crazy for us; he is finishing at the rim and knocking down open shots. I can’t ask for any more out of Ty Molzen.”
It looked like the contest might get out of hand early as St Teresa rode the return of starter Christian Williams to a 7-2 lead with five minutes to play in the first quarter. Nick Frerichs stopped the bleeding with a 3-pointer from the top of the key to cut into the lead to 7-5, but the Bulldogs got two quick buckets extending the lead to 11-6 with three minutes remaining in the first. Molzen then went on a rebounding spree to close out the quarter, and the Redskins were able to cut the lead to 15-10. Read More

Findlay Boys’ Cinderella Season Remembered

Photo by Brandi Denton Pictured are members of the 93’ Findlay eight grade boys’ basketball team. Back row, left to right: Coach Herb Bricker, Anthony Scott, Zac Atkinson, Travis Park, and Nick Berry; Front row: Curtis Shinn, Brock Nichols, cheerleaders Robin Perry and Jamie Martinski, and Michael Williams.

Photo by Brandi Denton
Pictured are members of the 93’ Findlay eight grade boys’ basketball team. Back row, left to right: Coach Herb Bricker, Anthony Scott, Zac Atkinson, Travis Park, and Nick Berry; Front row: Curtis Shinn, Brock Nichols, cheerleaders Robin Perry and Jamie Martinski, and Michael Williams.

January 21, 2015

‘93 team remembered for Elite 8 run

By Matt Kracht
NP Sports Reporter

Herb Bricker has been coaching basketball in the area for more than 15 years. But there’s one game in particular that still sticks out to him–one where he enjoyed having a pair of scissors in one hand and a net in the other.
And last Thursday night that game, in part, along with the 1993 Findlay 8th grade boys’ basketball team was recognized almost 20 years after their Elite 8 run in the state tournament. That year the team coached by Bricker went 18-4 with Bricker winning IESA coach of the year.
“After our win, the president of the IESA stayed in our hotel, and he made a point to tell me the defense we played was the most impressive he had since Andy Kaufmann in the mid 80s,” recalled Bricker.
Travis Parks confirmed just how important defense was to that team.
“Herb coached us from fourth grade that defense wins games,” he said. “That is just what it takes to win games.”
Bricker noted the team would try to hold opponents to 15 shot attempts per game and actually held a team to just four shot attempts in one contest. Read More

Top Seeded OV Upset by Lady Knights in LOVC Tourney

January 21, 2015

Strong shooting propels ALAH

By Matt Kracht
NP Sports Reporter

Fourth seed Arthur Lovington Atwood-Hammond rallied from a seven point first quarter deficit to stun the top seeded Lady Timberwolves Monday night in the second round of the LOVC Conference tourney. The Lady Knights outscored Okaw Valley 22-7 in the second quarter and 18-5 in the third ultimately cruising to a 56-39 point victory.
With the Lady Knights trailing 13-7 early in the second quarter sophomore Mycalea Miller knocked down back to back threes to tie the game with six minutes to go before half. Miller scored a team high 15 points on the night. Okaw Valley fought back taking a 17-15 lead before Kimberly Davis nailed a dagger three to take it right back at 18-17. The floodgates then opened, and ALAH went on a 10 point run capped off by another clutch three from Kimberly Davis putting the score at 28-17 with under a minute to go before the half. Read More

Three 20-point Plus Performances Aid Sullivan Victory

SullivanGirls2January 21, 2015

St. T unable to stop Lady Red trio

by Aaron Dyer
Sullivan Reporter

Last Thursday night, Sullivan Lady Redskins jumped forward in the Central Illinois Conference at 4-0 after taking on the St. Teresa Lady Bulldogs and winning 80-32.
With a combination of Brittin Boyer, Emily Neuhauser, and Elissa Stewart, it has become clear the SHS Lady Redskins are a tough team to beat.
And though St. Teresa fought to keep up with Sullivan, the first quarter was all anybody had to see to know the game would be a blow out.
Boyer won the jump, and Sullivan took off scoring six points in the first 30 seconds of the game forcing St. T to call a time out. Read More

Cardinals Flex in Dominant Win Over Sullivan

Photo by R.R. Best Sullivan’s Zach Hrvol drives to the open basket last Friday.

Photo by R.R. Best
Sullivan’s Zach Hrvol drives to the open basket last Friday.

January 21, 2015

No. 5 ranked Warrensburg demonstrates abilities in win

by Aaron Dyer
Sullivan Reporter

While last week against Tuscola may have been a close contest, Sullivan couldn’t manage to pull it together on Friday against Warrensburg-Latham’s boys’ basketball team–a group that for the second week in a row in January was ranked no. 5 in class 2A.
Despite the 62-37 loss, Sullivan did earn a bit of experience and things to practice for when they approach their next competitor on the court.
“We ran into a really good team, and they took advantage of our mistakes,” said head coach Chester Reeder.
When the game began, Warrensburg-Latham Cardinals took off to an early lead, managing to steal the ball and shut down Sullivan before they could even get an attempt.
During the first quarter, Layne McMahon and Alec Ballinger both acquired a foul against Sullivan, though the Cardinals would convert on only one of their free throws.
After the fouls, Reeder called a time out in hopes of reforming his team and getting them back on the board, and that’s exactly what he did.
With the pep talk during the time out, the Redskins scored in a neck-and-neck pattern as both teams attacked the paint and ended the first with the Cardinals narrowly ahead 12-17.
But the second quarter was a change for the worse as the Redskins seemed to hesitate more.
“We weren’t attacking the paint throughout the whole game like we usually do,” said Reeder. “We started to in the first quarter, but the second and third quarter, we got away from it.” Read More

Lady Timberwolves Win First Conference Matchup

January 21, 2015

Enter LOVC tournament as no. 1 seed Monday

By Matt Kracht
NP Sports Reporter

Okaw Valley started their conference schedule Thursday night with a dominant 51-39 win over Argenta. Amanda McClain tallied another double double scoring 15 points with 15 rebounds, and Jessica Robinson turned in a performance to remember scoring the first 10 points of the game. Whatever pre game meal Robinson had before Thursday night’s game should definitely be on the menu Monday as she was on fire early in the game propelling Okaw Valley to a 9-2 lead with four minutes to go in the first period. Robinson would then add a free throw to score the first 10 for the Lady Timberwolves, a feat that did not go unnoticed by head coach Don Gardener.
“Jess had a phenomenal game tonight,” he said. “This is what we expect of her. She is solid on offense. She is solid on defense, and only being a sophomore her confidence is growing and growing.” Robinson ended the night with 13 points, seven rebounds and two assists. Read More

Knights Impress in 51-26 Victory over Tri-County

January 21, 2015

Suffocating defense key in win

By Matt Kracht
NP Sports Reporter

A deliberate looking Arthur-Lovington/Atwood-Hammond boys’ squad overwhelmed the Tri-County Titans Friday night by a 25-point margin. Tyler Schuring shredded the nylon early knocking four 3-pointers in the first half. Tanner Brewer added 15 points to go with four rebounds in one of the big man’s best games so far this season.
Tri-County entered the contest 15-3 on the season and promptly jumped out to a 6-0 lead on back to back threes. But Jeremy Plank responded for the Knights with a deep trey, and Brewer added a layup to take back the lead 7-6 with three minutes remaining in the first. Tyler Schuring caught fire, and it was contagious as the Knights outscored Tri-County 27-5 to close out the half. ALAH was also spectacular defensively showcasing a suffocating man defense that held Tri-County to one point in the second quarter. Read More