LAKEVILLE, IN. – Sometimes it’s the “little things” in a high school game that can help turn the tide.
Class 2A #5 LaVille was able to take advantage of some timely plays en route to a 49-33 high school basketball victory.
“For me it was tough to tell what the exact turning point of the game was, but there were several big plays that helped put the game out of reach for them,” said LaVille coach Michael Edson. “There were so many little things that so many of our players did to help us have an edge over Argos. For example, Riley Wagoner had multiple times where he forced his man to catch the ball (or kept him from getting it) outside of where Argos wanted to receive it, we had multiple players who stepped up and took a charge as Argos drove down the lane (Some were called and some we were late on), there were many times where I saw several of our guys boxing another player out and going strong to get the ball, the deflections and steals some of players had helped lead us to easy buckets, and there are many more.”
The Lancers continued to clamp down on defense, allowing Argos to a season-low 33 points and the best defensive effort so far this season for LHS.
“I know that Argos was not able to knock down some of the shots that they normally make,” said Edison. “Ian Kindig, one of their better offensive players, was only able to get four points. He did not play as well as he is capable. I was pleased with our defensive effort and we will continue to strive to get better in this area. I felt like we were able to really pick it up to a higher level in the second half. Several deflections and steals led to easy opportunities for us.”
There was a heart-stopping moment in the game when LaVille forward Rilye Cox went up for an errant pass and came crashing down to the floor. Cox left the game and was check by LaVille Athletic Trainer Gary Hall before returning.
“Rilye really stepped up big for us!” explained Edison. “He fought through a lot of pain and was able to have an exceptional game. His rebounding has been invaluable to us in the first few games and last night was no different. I have really liked the way he has embraced his senior leadership role.”
Cox returned to score a season-high 19 points to go with 11 rebounds.
It was the first home game of the season for LaVille. The Lancers started the season on the road against a much-improved South Bend Career Academy squad, rival Bremen, and Rochester.
“Anytime we can get a win against a Gordon Mosson coached team we are very excited,” said Edison. “Gordon does a great job and always has his players very well prepared! I have a lot of respect for the way he gets so much out of each of his players. They all know their role and they play very well as a team. They have always been a tough opponent for us so it is nice to get a big win against a quality opponent.”
There were several players that made big plays either offensively or defensively along the way. LaVille point-guard Connor Wieczorek hit some big shots to finish with a season-high 15 points to go with five rebounds and four assists.
“Connor is definitely a spark plug for us,” concluded Edison. “He gets us going both offensively and defensively. He is super fun to watch on the defensive end because of his reaction time and the way he anticipates what is going to happen. He gets a lot of deflections for us and takes the other team out of what they are trying to do. He was able to drive to the basket and finish at the rim on multiple plays last night. He also stepped up and hit a big 3 pointer for us. He did a little bit of everything for us!
Riley Wagoner picked up several key rebounds and scored his first bucket of the season, while Cox had a highlight-reel moment, stealing the ball at half court and dunking the ball to get the Cox Gymnasium crowd fired up. Jared Beehler hit a deep three to put the Lancers up in the first quarter, and Luke Beehler dropped in 13 points, including a key 3-point bucket.
“Essentially, I was very happy with our focus and mindset entering the game last night,”said Edison.
LaVille improved to 4-0 overall and will open Hoosier North Athletic Conference action Friday at Winamac.
The girl-boy HNAC doubleheader will start the girl’s game at 6:30 p.m., with the varsity boys to follow.
Argos 8 15 21 33
LaVille 11 22 34 49
Argos – Manikowski 8, VanDerWeele 13, Kindig 4, Osborn 6, Riddle 0, Bollenbacher 0, Ellis 0, Nifong 2. Totals 14 4-7 33
LaVille – Wieczorek 12, L. Beehler 13, Wagoner 2, J. Beehler 3, Czarnecki 0, Good 0, Dill 0, Doyle 0, Cox 19, Goze 0, Fischer 0. Totals: 20 3-4 49
3-point field goals: Argos 1 (VanDerWeele), LaVille 6 (Cox 3, Wieczorek 2, L. Beehler)
Total fouls (fouled out): Argos 13 (none), LaVille 15 (none)