by Coach Russ Weiler
The Blackhawks showed grit and determination in their final conference game of the season on Senior Night, as they made plays throughout the night in a close game and prevailed with the 68-63 victory to earn 4th place in the Eastern Cloverbelt Conference. The night was also the last conference game for the Blackhawks' only senior, Aaron Ovyn, who was recognized by the program and fans before the game for his determination and commitment throughout his entire basketball career.
In a fast pace start to the game, neither team scored much early as the Blackhawks had some solid looks but came away empty. Tyler Weaver's three, was the only points that the Hawks could muster in their first seven possessions as they fell behind 7-3. The Blackhawks would then score on six straight possessions with an Ovyn two starting it off. Weaver and Ovyn then hit back-to-back threes to continue the run with Geldernick crashing the offensive board for a pair. Weaver then went coast to coast for a hard earn lay in.
Later Geldernick continued to hit the boards on back-to-back possession scoring a total of three points and giving the Hawks a 19-16 lead. Teams would play close for most of the half as Colby grabbed a 22-19 lead. A Weaver three, his third in the half, tied it up and then Logan Amacher scored back-to-back hoops as the Hawks took the lead and then some. Ovyn and Geldernick each scored to extend the lead to 30-22. Later on, a nice give and go cut Geldernick hit Weaver for two in the lane, and then to conclude the half Weaver nailed Amacher flying down the court for a pretty fast break to give the Hawks a 35-22 halftime lead.
The second half would continue to be a battle as the Blackhawks shots would be nice ones but didn't always fall as the Hornets would use the three ball and some dribble penetration for their scores to rally back throughout the half. An early second half post pass connection from Klabon to Amacher started it for the Hawks. Roy Stinson scored on a nifty drive and a hard earn hoop and harm by Amacher continued the scoring. A Weaver jumper off a Geldernick pass kept the lead at 46-39, but the Hornets kept coming. Rob Wendler scored three straight points on two possessions to go along with a Weaver put back.
The Blackhawks continued to find points on the boards as Amacher fought for two and then Stinson found Geldernick on an inbound pass for a basket making it 56-51 with four minutes to go. A few turnovers hurt the Hawks and helped the Hornets take a 57-56 lead. The Hawks settled back down and Weaver found Amacher with a post feed for two and the foul. Amacher hit the free throw to put the Hawks up 59-57. Colby would tie it at 59, but Geldernick found Weaver on a cut for two and a foul, in which he hit the free throw for a 62-59 lead with under two minutes to play. Colby woud score to on their and cut the Hawks' lead to one. The Blackhawks got a great look that spun out and the Hornets scored another two on their end, taking a 63-62 lead. With under a minute to go the Hawks immediately brought the ball up and got an inside shot that Geldernich then rebounded up and in on the backside to put the Blackhawks up 64-63 with 18 seconds to play.
The Hornets came out of a time out and the Hawks played solid defense as Logan Amacher contested the Colby shot to force the shooter to adjust and miss. Roy Stinson secured the backside rebound and was fouled, which was called a flagrant. Stinson calmly hit the pair of free throws, and the Hawks threw the inbound pass deep and scored to secure the hard earned 68-63 win.
The Blackhawks grabbed 50 rebounds on the night and fought for twenty second chance points.
Box Score: Weaver 21 pts, 11 rebs, 3 asts, Amacher 16 pts, 8 rebs, 3 blks, Geldernick 12 pts, 9 rebs, 5 asts, Ovyn 10 pts, 5 rebs, Stinson 6 pts, 8 rebs, Wendler 3 pts, Klabon 8 rebs, 4 asts, 3 stls, Ackerman 1 ast, 1 blk.
The guys just kept playing and showed some experience of playing in a close game. They came down on offense and executed when they needed to, as Colby had to adjust to us getting the ball inside. I thought the guys did a great job of crashing the offensive boards on the weakside as Colby over shifted to the ballside. We were solid, as the game had 3-4 runs during it for both teams and we always answered and didn't force shots.
Congrats to Aaron Ovyn on his Senior Night! He is very well liked by his teammates and he has shown his dedication all the way to the end of his senior year. We know that we would like to be playing in front of bigger crowds during his senior year, but he, along with his teammates, have done a great job making the best of playing basketball during a pandemic. I thank Aaron for his commitment and his family's commitment to him during his basketball career. We still have a lot to do.
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