Some people may have been surprised to see Bishop Dwenger capture a sectional championship on Saturday night with a 50-40 victory over No. 4 New Haven, but past history shows it should be no surprise at all.
The Saints have now won three sectional titles in the last five years, with the program also winning in 2012 and 2010.
Since 2007, Bishop Dwenger is 51-21 in February and March, showing that the Saints peak at the right time consistently under Coach Matt Kostoff.
The team usually has several players who also compete in football, with the season typically going deep into November. That leads to an acclimation period once hoops season begins.
While proper conditioning can take a week or two to adjust to, fully being integrated into basketball can take much longer for the football players.
“It definitely takes some time, but it comes along,” senior Mike Fiacable said. “Just doing some extra work and staying after practice definitely helped me get in the groove early in the season.”
The Saints (15-8) are definitely in the groove right now as well.
Woodlan plays the waiting game
It is not as if Coach Dave Randall and his Warriors are upset that they have had to wait two extra days to play their sectional championship game against Canterbury scheduled for tonight at 7 p.m. at South Adams, it's just that Woodlan was hoping to keep its momentum going on a regular season.
With the Canterbury girls' basketball team in the Class 2A state championship on Saturday, the sectional final was moved to tonight.
“We don't care who we play, we just want to keep that momentum going, but it is what it is,” Woodlan coach Dave Randall said. “But hats off to the Canterbury girls.”
The Warriors (17-6) have won five straight games, including a 62-59 victory over Churubusco last Friday in the sectional semifinals.
Despite the delay, Randall is confident his team will be ready to try and win the program's first sectional championship since 1997.
“Fortunately, we have had a nice year (and) have been in big games before I would worry more if the kids hadn't been in a pressure-packed situation before,” Randall said. “
North Side's Davis on the mend
North Side was able to capture its first sectional championship since 2010 without a big contribution from senior Mike Davis on Saturday.
The 6-foot-5 forward battled a flu bug throughout the weekend and missed the morning shootaround prior to the championship game against Carroll on Saturday night.
Davis played in the Redskins' 63-40 victory but was limited to zero points and four rebounds with four fouls.
“With our guys, if someone like Mike isn't getting it done, other guys are able to step it up,” Khaliq said.
In the absence of Davis, Myluv Sutton came off the bench to make some big plays.
“It may not show up in the box score what (Sutton) did,” North Side coach Shabaz Khaliq said. “Having an option like Sutton makes it easier.”
The fourth-ranked Redskins (24-1) have shown they can survive without one or two key contributors in a game, but with the stakes rising and a showdown with No. 3 Hamilton Southeastern looming on Saturday, North Side will need one of its leading scorers to be at full strength.
* Blackhawk Christian, Bishop Dwenger and Woodlan each had the most improved regular seasons by record in the area with a six-game improvement. Blackhawk Christian went from 7-15 to 13-9, Bishop Dwenger went from 5-13 to 12-8 and Woodlan went from 9-12 to 15-6.
* Bowman Academy's 117 points Saturday in a 117-78 win over Gary Wallace is the most in the class era in sectionals, beating the old record of 116 by North Newton in a 116-112 double-overtime win over River Forest.
* If Woodlan beats Canterbury tonight for the South Adams Sectional title, all four of the teams in the Class 2A North Judson Regional will have 'Warriors' as their nickname – Woodlan, Winamac, Hammond Noll and Westview.
(All games Saturday, semifinals at 10 a.m. and noon, championships at 8 p.m.)
Richmond [22-2] vs. Indianapolis Tech [23-2]
Pike [14-8] vs. Brownsburg [21-2]
Evansville Central [16-6] vs. New Albany [17-6]
Bloomington North [14-8] vs. Franklin Central [13-10]
Lake Central [19-3] vs. LaPorte [16-7]
Concord [15-8] vs. Penn [21-1] or South Bend Riley [14-8]
Kokomo [16-7] vs. Homestead [18-7]
Fort Wayne North [24-1] vs. Hamilton Southeastern [22-3]
Guerin Catholic [20-3] vs. Tri-West [15-7]
Crawfordsville [12-10] vs. Edgewood [12-10]
Greensburg [24-1] vs. Silver Creek [15-8]
Evansville Memorial [16-6] vs. Jasper [14-9]
Bowman Academy [19-4] vs. Andrean [13-9]
Twin Lakes [15-7] or Western [15-6] vs. South Bend St. Joseph [17-6]
Fort Wayne Dwenger [15-8] vs. NorthWood [21-2]
Muncie Central [10-11] vs. Norwell [19-6]
Indianapolis Attucks [13-9] vs. Park Tudor [20-4]
Northeastern [22-2] vs. Speedway [16-6]
Linton-Stockton [19-6] vs. Evansville Mater Dei [13-9] or Perry Central [17-5]
Austin [13-10] vs. Clarksville [21-2]
Fort Wayne Canterbury [10-12] or Woodlan [17-6] vs. Winamac [14-8]
Hammond Noll [21-3] vs. Westview [20-4]
Fountain Central [15-7] vs. Tipton [14-8]
Lewis Cass [20-2] vs. Wapahani [22-1]
Greenwood Christian [18-5] vs. Indianapolis Metropolitan [9-15]
Clay City [18-6] vs. Oldenburg Academy [13-9]
Barr-Reeve [22-1] or Vincennes Rivet [11-12] vs. Trinity Lutheran [16-6]
Northeast Dubois [11-12] vs. Lanesville [15-8]
Culver [16-7] vs. North White [16-8]
Marquette Catholic [16-6] vs. Fort Wayne Blackhawk [16-9]
Seton Catholic [15-7] vs. Liberty Christian [18-6]
Rossville [16-8] vs. Lafayette Central Catholic [15-8]