The tension and excitement was palpable as Michigan City hosted the South Bend Riley Wildcats in tonight’s IHSAA Class 4A Sectional basketball tournament.
The Wolves (13-11, 3-4) were ranked 6th overall in the Duneland conference for tonight’s game. They faced a tough opposition going into tonight’s tournament from the Wildcats, but they never gave up and fought hard to the final buzzer and a 91-76 loss to South Bend Riley in tonight’s neutral playoff game.
The South Bend Wildcats (17-6, 8-3) are 4th in the Northern Indiana conference, and they played with talent and focus, jumping out to an early 19-16 lead in the first quarter, a lead which they would hold onto with an iron fist throughout the rest of the game.
After closing out the first half trailing the Wildcats 40-31, Michigan City came out blazing in the second half, at times coming to within just a few points of their challengers. It wasn’t quite enough to retake the lead, despite a standout performance from the Wolves’ #11, Jamie Hodges Jr. The 5’ 9” sophomore point guard turned in an amazing show, turning up the heat on South Bend with a blistering 4th quarter run, and pushing himself to a game-high total of 35 points.
South Bend fought off the challenge for a comeback win however and continued to hold on to their lead, coasting to a final score of 91-76, thanks to a powerhouse performance from #0, Blake Wesley, the 6’ 5” 180lb Sr PG, SG, whose consistent play saw a string of field goals throughout the entire game and a total of 32 game points.
Wesley was assisted by teammates #5 Phillip Robles, 5’ 11” Sr PG who drained every free throw and #24, Jackson Copley, 6’ 3” 180lb Sr SF/SG, who put up 14 points of his own, and #22, Davyion Anderson, 6’ 4” 195 lb senior SF, F who helped his team to a decisive win with another 12 points.
This sets up for the Battle of the ‘Bend with South Bend Riley set to face off against South Bend Adams in tomorrow’s championship game.