Niles remains undefeated
Published 12:38 am Wednesday, January 19, 2011
A 25-point second quarter and some timely buckets down the stretch kept Niles undefeated Tuesday night.
The Vikings outscored visiting Battle Creek Central 25-11 in the second quarter to open up a 39-25 halftime advantage on the Bearcats (2-7).
Niles would have to withstand a furious second half rally by Battle Creek to improve to 8-0 on the season.
The Bearcats cut the lead to just three points on several occasions in the third quarter, the last coming at 1:07 to go in the period following a pair of free throws by Trey McDonald, the Ohio State prospect.
The Vikings responded with a quick flurry to end the quarter and led 54-47 heading to the fourth.
Niles rebuilt its lead to 10 points early in the final quarter and was pretty much able to maintain that lead throughout the period.
Austin Parks, who helped spearhead the big second quarter with a trio of 3-pointers, hit another triple with 5:49 to go in the contest to give the Vikings a 59-49 lead.
Battle Creek wouldn’t go away, however, and kept trying to make another run at Niles. But each time, the Vikings would come up with a basket or free throws to keep the Bearcats at bay.
Battle Creek Central would get no closer than seven points in the final eight minutes, the last time coming with 3:19 to play.
The Vikings quickly got the lead back to 10 points as Jordan Potthoff connected on a basket with 2:23 to play and canned a free throw 11 seconds later to push the lead back up to double digits, 69-59.
Niles put the game away at the free throw line in the fourth quarter as it connected on 8-of-12 attempts, led by Myles Busby, who was a perfect 6-of-6.
The two teams were deadlocked at 14-14 after one quarter of play, but the Vikings came out in the second quarter on fire and took it to the Bearcats.
“I love the way we rebounded the ball and ran the floor,” Niles coach Todd Pawielski said. “I thought that us started and then it just seemed like Austin Parks hit a 3-pointer.”
It was Parks that kick-started the second quarter with a triple just 42 seconds into the period. Two minutes later his second 3-pointer gave the Vikings a 22-20 lead that they would not relinquish.
Zak Prenkert also had a key stretch of plays at both ends of the court to help the Vikings build up a 27-20 advantage with 5:18 remaining in the half.
Prenkert scored on an offensive rebound and was fouled. He completed the three-point play and then came up with a big block at the defensive end of the floor.
He hurried up the court and was on the receiving end of a pass that allowed him to score again to give Niles a seven-point lead.
Parks and Taylor Campbell both connected on triples as the lead grew to 33-21 with four minutes showing on the clock.
Quintin Irby finished off the big second quarter for the Vikings with a pair of baskets in the final 1:28 of the half.
Busby led all scorers with 22 points, while Parks and Campbell each netted 12. Busby also had six rebounds and eight assists, while Parks had five rebounds and three assists.
Niles also got eight points from Potthoff and seven points from Prenkert.
McDonald led the Bearcats with 17 points. Leroy Gibbs finished with 12 and Josheph Bowser with 11.
The Vikings will put their undefeated record on the line Friday night as they play host to the surging Benton Harbor Tigers.
BATTLE CREEK 59
Darion Prather 1 0-0 3; Josheph Bowser 1 0-0 2; Leroy Gibbs 4 0-0 11; Semaj McKethan 5 1-2 12; Nathan Taylor 3 0-0 6; Curtis Trigg 0 1-2 1; Akil McKinney 0 1-5 1; Trey McDonald 6 3-4 17; Maurice Rose 2 0-0 6. TOTALS: 20 6-13 59
Myles Busby 4 14-19 22; Austin Parks 4 0-0 12; Logan Harpenau 0 0-0 0; Riley Robson 0 0-0 0; Zak Prenkert 3 1-3 7; Nick Lucero 0 2-3 2; Jordan Potthoff 3 1-3 8; Taylor Campbell 5 0-0 12; Quintin Irby 3 2-2 8; Brandon Partee 0 0-0 0. TOTALS: 22 20-30 71
Battle Creek 14 25 47 59
Niles 14 39 54 71
3-point baskets: Battle Creek 7 (Prather, Gibbs 3, McKethan, McDonald 2), Niles 7 (Parks 4, Potthoff, Campbell 2). Total fouls: Battle Creek 22, Niles 16. Fouled out: McDonald (BC). Varsity records: Battle Creek 2-7, Niles 8-0