SELLERSBURG — With almost two full weeks passing since the last time he saw his team on the court, Silver Creek coach Brandon Hoffman had no idea what to expect when his squad hit the floor Friday against traditional Mid-Southern Conference power Brownstown.
He got a win — and he’s perfectly fine with it.
The Dragons scored the game’s first seven points and stayed undefeated in MSC play by holding off the Braves 49-45 to move to 5-0 in conference.
“There’s a lot of coaches who really had no idea what they’d see out of their team tonight,” Hoffman said. “Two weeks between games, a holiday, snow days, practice when you can get it in … it’s really not easy to predict how you’ll respond. A conference win over Brownstown, you’ll always take that.”
Zane Gross has 17 points to help the Creek to its fourth win in five games. The Dragons also tightened their grip on the conference race by staying unbeaten with four conference games remaining, including a Feb. 1 showdown with dangerous Salem.
“Just keep ourselves in position to get to one of our goals,” Hoffman said. “That’s the biggest takeaway from a game like tonight.”
The Dragons led by as many as 12 in the second half but had to hang on in the fourth after watching Brownstown close to within 46-42 late in the final quarter.
The Braves had two chances to cut the margin to a single possession but Ethan Wischmeier missed a 3 and they turned the ball over with 1:04 remaining.
Gross converted two free throws with 37 seconds left to put Creek up 48-42. A Michael Boshears 3 cut the cushion to 3, but Sammy Barnett made 1-of-2 at the line with 17 seconds to cap the scoring.
“Defensively, I thought we locked in pretty well,” Hoffman said. “We kept them off the boards, got some blocks when they were at the basket and got out on their shooters for the most part. Offensively, we kind of looked like we hadn’t played in two weeks. Missed easy shots. Turned it over. Had segments where we stood and watched. It’s a win. It’s a good win, but there’s plenty left for us to work on.”
Gross was the lone Dragon in double figures. Ty Kessinger had nine, including a pair of 3s in the second quarter as Creek grabbed a 27-20 advantage at the break.
Boshears has 13 for the Braves in the loss. Creek will travel to Providence on Tuesday.
SILVER CREEK 49, BROWNSTOWN CENTRAL 45
Brownstown 8 12 11 14—45
Silver Creek 9 18 12 10—49
Brownstown (7-4, 2-2 MSC): Michael Boshears 13, Matthew Garland 3, Seth Borden 10, Cam Luedeman 8, Hayden Kinsler 3, Ethan Wischmeier 8.
Silver Creek (10-3, 5-0): Ty Kessinger 9, Zane Gross 17, Jack Hawkins 6, Bennett Beyl 7, Sammy Barnett 1, Trey Kaufman 2, Kooper Jacobi 7.
3-point field goals: Brownstown 6 (Wischmeier 2, Leudeman 2, Garland, Boshears); Silver Creek 6 (Gross 3, Kessinger 2, Beyl)
JV Final Score – SC: 50 Brownstown: 39
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