This Saturday, regional play will take place across the state in boys basketball and our area has two teams in classes 4A, 3A and 2A. Blackhawk Christian will jump into […]
This Saturday, regional play will take place across the state in boys basketball and our area has two teams in classes 4A, 3A and 2A.
Blackhawk Christian will jump into their first Class 2A regional and Churubusco returns for the first time since 2017. Only two teams in this Regional have ever won a Regional title with Bowman Academy winning in 2014 and Blackhawk Christian winning their Regional each of the last two seasons in Class 1A.
How will this regional play out? Let’s break it down.
BLACKHAWK CHRISTIAN (23-3)
One, two, three…right down the line, Blackhawk Christian again has three guys as good as the best player on most teams. And they have rolled because of that. Caleb Furst (22.1 ppg, 13.4 rpg) has been playing the best basketball of his prep career lately and it has almost shielded how strong that Zane Burke and Marcus Davidson have been beside him. All three shoot above 50 percent from the field, led by Furst’s 68% clip. Davidson is shooting 43 percent from three point range and a team best 84 percent from the free throw line. Not to mention the Braves trio’s biggest advantage: they have been here before. They have been in bigger games before. Comfort and knowledge goes a long way on this chaotic day.
But Blackhawk Christian isn’t just a three man show, as indicated from their first tip of the season through their current seven game winning streak. Two of their losses have come versus Class 4A teams and the other to perhaps the Class 3A favorite Silver Creek. The Braves have gotten here with poise and high level of basketball I.Q. Blackhawk Christian slid Callan Wood, Jake Boyer and Andrew McIntosh into the lineup and didn’t miss a beat despite very limited varsity experience for the trio. Being able to slide in Gage Sefton and Luke Lagrange for spot play has been helpful lately too. To beat Blackhawk, you have to play smarter than Blackhawk, which is difficult to do. Play with a great I.Q. or (good luck) try to find a way to dumb them down. Blackhawk is the favorite state wide in this Regional, maybe in Class 2A, for a reason.
Numbers can tell a lot of truths and a lot of lies. The Eagles are scoring 81.2 points per game in their current 10 game winning streak. Their competition may not have consistently been a high level, but that is still a lot of scoring and you have to have guys who can put the ball in the basket to score a lot against any team. Churubusco has developed that, in part, because of not having a full roster parts of the year. The Eagles’ record also lies. Why? Because they are actually 15-2 since Landen Jordan was first able to play in January. Jackson Paul’s 19 point, 5.3 assist per game numbers lead the way, but this is a balanced lineup.
Why are they the top contender? Because their game with Blackhawk Christian will be a clash of styles. As mentioned above, the Braves are team that relies on their I.Q. They are going to play fundamental, well thought out basketball. Can Busco do that? Sure, some. But the Eagles thrive in chaos; they get after the ball, they make things ugly and they create off of that. Can Blackhawk do that? Not to mention the presence of Jordan (15.6 ppg, 12. rpg), one of the few guys of comparable size that Caleb Furst has had to match up with this season. There is a lot of intrigue here.
BOWMAN ACADEMY (14-7)
The best Bowman team since 2014, they have played a fairly strong schedule this season with all but one of their losses coming out of state, to a prep school or to Class 4A teams. Koron Davis (22.9 peg, 44% FG) is a high energy and output scorer. Bowman has plenty of experience around him though, especially Jacques Williams (17.7 ppg, 8.9 rpg). Five members of this team are seniors and the rest are juniors, not to mention they just knocked off defending state champion Andrean, who was pretty experienced too. Bowman also has a win over Class 3A North favorite Hammond and that one wasn’t close.
19 win LaVille has not lost since February 14 and has, at no point, lost by double digits. They have a solid balanced line up with no real breakout star, led by 11.7 points from Bobby Good. They are a patient team that is comfortable scoring in the 50’s and relying on their defense and shooting prowess; Andrew Dill hit for shots from deep in the Sectional final and the team shoots over 16 three pointers per game on average. LaVille has won their 6th ever Sectional title but have never won a Regional crown.
CLASS 2A NORTH JUDSON REGIONAL SCHEDULE
MORNING (all times Eastern, played in Central time zone)
Blackhawk Christian (23-3) vs. Churubusco (17-6), 11 a.m.
LaVille (19-6) vs. Bowman Academy (14-7), 1 p.m.
EVENING (all times Eastern, played in Central time zone)
Championship, 7:30 p.m.
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