Lions give Timberwolves good battle
LAMOILLE — The Indian Creek Timberwolves led from start to finish Friday night, ultimately downing the LaMoille/Ohio Lions, 63-52, in Little Ten Conference play.
But it wasn’t quite as easy for the visitors as the final tally might seem to suggest. It was just a six-point game five different times throughout the game’s fourth quarter, despite Indian Creek scoring the first 14 points on the night.
“Best game I’ve seen a LaMoille team play since I’ve been here given the talent of the team we played,” said L/O coach Brent Kalsto. “Best team in the Little Ten, probably one of the best teams in the area. Three and a half minutes into the game, it was 14-nothing. From that point on, we out-scored them (by three). They wanted nothing to do with us in the third and fourth quarters. They wanted nothing to do with us.
“I told the kids, this was the turning point. We can keep playing like this, being in games, or we can go back to what we did the first 14 games. Seeing their eyes light up at halftime, that’s why I like to coach, the excitement, the learning process, the thinking. All of that is the best part of being a coach. And I love these kids for that.”
Indeed, Indian Creek jumped out to a 14-0 lead with 4:11 left in the first quarter. Following L/O’s second timeout of the first period, a layup by Josh Gross at the 3:48 mark got the Lions on the board.
Indian Creek led 19-7 after eight minutes of play. It was a nine-point Timberwolves’ lead, 27-18, before the visitors closed out the first half on top, 37-24.
The Lions’ deficit was reduced to seven points three times over the course of the third quarter, as the hosts continued to fight back from their slow start to the game.
A Brandon Morris three-point play made it 46-40, Indian Creek, 1:11 into the fourth period, but a 5-0 run quickly pushed the visitors back in front, 51-40.
L/O responded with a three-pointer by Gross and an Anthony Lovgren deuce, and it was back to six, 51-45.
Preston Powers’ basket with 1:36 left to play made it a six-point game for the final time, 58-52. From there, Indian Creek closed out the game by sinking 5-6 free throws to win by 11.
All told, Indian Creek attempted 17 free throws in the fourth quarter, connecting on nine of them, while L/O made good on only one of five free throws down the stretch.
LaMoille senior Anthony Lovgren posted a double-double for the Lions (4-11, 1-2), supplying team-highs of 16 points and 11 rebounds. Gross added 13 points, including three treys, and Jacob Tudor contributed 10 points off the bench.
Indian Creek 6-9 senior big man Garrison Govig scored 18 points on 7-11 shots from the field and grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds for the winners (9-4, 3-0).
• LaMoille/Ohio’s freshmen-sophomore squad came up short, 51-22, to Indian Creek in the preliminary game.