Jefferson (4-4) @ Auburn (6-2) – Game of the Week
Friday, January 26
When Jefferson took on Boylan last week, they both entered the matchup with 4-3 conference records. Jefferson fell to the Titans 46-43, which has been the story of the J-Hawks this season. Their four losses have now come to each of the top teams in the conference, but each loss has been by a single digit margin. The J-Hawks were led in scoring by Antoine Pittman with 14 points and Jared Mayes with 15. The team also put up five three-pointers against the Titans.
This week, Jefferson takes on the Auburn Knights who are one of three teams currently sitting at 6-2. While the Knights have consistently been headed by Tramel Rideout (F) and Laytwan Porter (G), they have also seen solid production from Corey Jefferson, Contrell Curry and Zayvious Hoover. Like Jefferson, Auburn is a team who likes to do work behind the perimeter; they shot seven three-pointers in their 65-57 win over Boylan.
Hononegah (6-2) @ Belvidere (6-2)
Friday, January 26
The Belvidere Bucs suffered only their second conference loss of the season last week against East in our NIC-10 Game of the Week, joining Auburn and Hononegah at 6-2 in the standings. Despite an outstanding night for Belvidere’s Joe Byers (G/SF), who put up 21-points against the E-Rabs, the Bucs got into foul trouble early and were ultimately beaten on the line in the fourth quarter.
The Hononegah Indians have not lost to a NIC-10 team since mid-December, when they were beaten 54-53 by the E-Rabs. Lately, it’s been the Jack Granath Show at Hononegah, who has more than stepped up for the Indians’ offense after Jacob Doyle’s season-ending injury. While the spotlight has been on Belvidere as the deepest team in the NIC-10, Hononegah is emerging as a team who can support Granath as their go-to guy, with help from players like Jake Wilson, Gary Hedrington and Ryan Sughroe. Hononegah should have a height advantage over the Bucs this week, especially if they can limit the effectiveness of Belvidere’s big-men Ian Carlson and Zach Wallace under the hoop, as East did last week.
Friday, January 25
Harlem (3-5) @ Belvidere North (2-6)
Boylan (5-3) @ Guilford (1-7)
Freeport (0-8) @ East (7-1)
Saturday, January 26
Hononegah (6-2) @ Auburn (6-2) – Game to Watch
Harlem (3-5) @ Belvidere (6-2)
Jefferson (4-4) @ East (7-1)
Guilford (1-7) @ Belvidere North (2-6)
by Liz Rudolph
ESPN1380 Prep Reporter
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