It’s not easy
sitting on the bench when you’re used to playing over 25 minutes a game.
Three fouls put
Jake Wadding in that unwanted predicament Tuesday against Michigan City, but
the Chesterton senior forward still found ways to contribute even if he
wasn’t on the court.
“I try to stay in
the game when on the bench, get excited when they score, get a steal, get a
stop, hit a shot,” Wadding said. “Kolton (Cardenas) hit big shots, Alex
(Schmidt), Sean (Elliott) played good, everybody. The guys kept it going,
playing hard, scoring, playing good defense. I give credit to them.”
Up six at the half,
the Trojans (14-4, 4-1 Duneland Athletic Conference) weathered the storm
through the stretch, when Jack Eaton also had three fouls, and pulled away
behind a big fourth quarter from Wadding to knock off the Wolves 51-40 on
"That was huge,”
Chesterton coach Marc Urban said. “With Jack and Jake out, we really held
the fort down. We made some good defensive plays and also were able to make
a couple buckets. I feel we had some guys, especially the third quarter,
step up and make some plays, Kolton hit some big 3s, Alex, Sean had a couple
buckets, Jake (Warren) did a good job making plays. That’s what you need to
have happen if you’re going to win.”
The Trojans nursed
a 38-35 with about six minutes to play when Wadding and Nick Mullen went on
an 8-0 run to put the game out of reach.
“Jake commands so
much of the other team’s attention, it benefits the other players,” Urban
said. “Jake has to play through a lot of contact at the rim. I’ve always
said about Jake, he’s a team player. He’s going to make plays when he needs
to, he’s going to pass when he needs to. That’s what makes him a really good
nine of his game-high 13 points in the final period, providing the
exclamation point with a late dunk on a takeoff down the lane.
“I had a lot of
energy,” said Wadding, who also nabbed nine boards. “I just wanted to attack
a little bit.”
Eaton added 11
points for Chesterton, nine of them coming in the first half, when a foul
and an ensuing technical foul sent him to the bench. Cardenas nailed two of
his three 3s in the second quarter when the Trojans went from 13-11 down to
27-21 up at the half.
"I hate to say I
got out-coached, but that’s a team that knows how to run their sets,” M.C.
coach John Boyd said. “My kids are still learning how to do that. They knew
exactly where their options were in their offense and they exploited them.
When they didn’t, they were patient enough to transition into another set,
another option, and sometimes we were a step slow. When you’re playing the
upper echelon of the Duneland, the Valpos, Chestertons, Merrillvilles, those
teams know how to keep a pace. There’s no break. The only break is when
you’ve got the ball, then you have to be patient. One guy breaks down, and
that’s all they need. I thought the fourth quarter we got some fatigue.”
The Wolves (9-11,
1-4) shot just 33 percent and were 3 of 17 from the arc. Leading scorer Ray
Howard had 10 points on just eight shots.
“We just discussed
it,” Boyd said. “Ray’s got a young kid on him who really can’t defend him,
we need to get him the ball. If you watched the same game I watched, you saw
a lot of our guards playing with the ball, holding the ball. Ray’s open and
we’re not having the confidence to get him the ball. We kept getting close,
but we could never get over the hump.”
Not having Wadding
on the floor for stretches didn’t help the Trojans’ cause in containing the
6-foot-7 post, but they managed to hold the Wolves to a season-low point
"Howard’s a tough
matchup for some of our guys, especially when we’re in foul trouble,” Urban
said. “We got a little loose defensively and he made a couple nice moves
down low, took us off the dribble a little bit, but I felt we just did a
good job defending. We’ve got to make sure we match their physicality, make
sure we rebound, and I thought we did.”
started at the point and played substantial minutes with Tyler Nelson
sidelined by an ankle sprain.
“It’s a different
role when you’re in all the time and he’s getting better,” Urban said. “I
really like him. He’s getting a lot more comfortable in the Duneland
Conference. He’s starting to really get better mentally, making the right
plays for us.”
The Trojans return
to the floor on Friday when they host Portage. The JV game is scheduled for
a 5:30 p.m. tip.
Michigan City 40
AT MICHIGAN CITY
Travis Grayson 2-4
2-2 6, Kolton Cardenas 3-6 0-0 9, Jack Eaton 2-2 5-6 11, Nick Mullen 1-5 2-4
4, Jake Wadding 5-11 3-5 13, Drew Vanderwoude 1-4 2-2 4, Alex Schmidt 0-1
0-0 0, Jake Warren 0-0 0-0 0, Sean Elliott 2-2 0-0 4. Totals 16-35 14-19 51.
(9-11, 1-4 DAC)
Omarian Hatch 0-2
0-0 0, Evan Bush 1-5 0-0 2, Jevon France 0-2 7-8 7, Jaivion Reid 4-8 0-0 9,
Ray Howard 4-8 2-3 10, Daijon Reddix 2-8 0-0 5, Donye’ Grant 0-2 0-0 0,
Dez’Mand Hawkins 3-4 0-0 7, Jalen Bullock 0-2 0-0 0, Tahari Watson 0-1 0-0
0, Cormac McLinden 0-0 0-0 0. Totals -- 14-42 9-11 40.
goals: Chesterton 5 (Cardenas 3, Eaton 2); Michigan City 3 (Reid, Reddix,
Hawkins). Leaders -- Rebounds: Wadding 9 (C); Howard 8 (MC). Assists:
Grayson, Cardenas 3 (C); Bush, Howard, Grant 2 (MC). Steals: Eaton 2 (C);
Reid 2 (MC). Team fouls: Chesterton 16, Michigan City 22. Fouled out: Eaton,