Times Sports Editor
When the Knights and Edgewood square off in boy's basketball, it is a fairly good bet that the game is going to be an emotional and close contest.
Last year's battle went to the Knights in overtime in a four-point affair and two seasons ago it was a two-point win by Northview. On Friday evening, with a large crowd on hand to support the Coaches vs. Cancer fundraising efforts, the Knights once again spoiled the Mustangs' evening as Jim Mace scored just before the buzzer for a 48-46 Northview victory.
The game-winner came as a result of an Edgewood turnover with 18 seconds remaining as Northview coach Clint Weddle called a pair of timeouts, the second one to set up a play with 8.4 seconds left.
The inbound pass found Travis Hakman, who held the ball briefly before Mace came open, took the assist and found the net as the horn sounded for a wild finish.
"We ran an out of bounds play where we were trying to get Craig (Peters) a look and we were trying to get a look for (Travis) Hakman," Weddle said regarding the game-winner. "Hakman did a great job with eight seconds, not to take the first shot. I was proud of him wheeling it back a little bit and we got the ball to Jim (Mace) and we were successful."
"The guys just kept coming over to the bench and saying, 'We're going to get this, we're going to get this,'" Weddle said. "And that was our guys sitting on the bench talking about that. I was very proud of them for that. I think they just continued to believe that good things were going to happen."
It appeared as if another sluggish start by the Knights wasn't going to cost them as Northview dominated the second quarter after falling behind 12-7 at the first stop.
The Knights got six points from Mace in the post and Joe Ball came off the bench despite drawing his second foul early in the first period to score five points. Peters knocked down a pair of 3-pointers and Northview turned a five-point deficit into a 24-17 lead at the break.
Ethan Whitson scored to open the third period as the lead grew to 26-17, but Edgewood began to pound the ball inside to 6'3, 200 lbs. senior Trevor Selburg. The forward hit all three of his shots in the quarter to keep the Mustangs close early. Following a 3-pointer by the Knights' Christian Ellis made the score 31-23, Edgewood rattled off a 9-2 run capped by a 3-pointer from Tommy Black and two free throws from the junior.
The rush had gotten Edgewood within 33-32 with 3:16 left in the quarter.
From there, the game turned into the dogfight every one expected.
A Hunter Ragan free throw gave Northview a 36-34 lead heading into the final period, but Selburg hit a free throw and Clayton Settle nailed a 3-pointer to give Edgewood a 38-38 tie.
Ethan Whitson, who had eight of his 10 points after halftime, gave Northview a 40-38 lead, but the Mustangs came back to take the lead at 42-40. Edgewood would lead 46-44 with just 1:31 remaining on two free throws by Selburg capped his 18-point, 11-rebound game.
Peters would draw a foul at the other end and calmly rolled home two free throws to tie the game with under a minute remaining. The Knights would catch a break as Edgewood crossed midcourt and lost control of the ball. In the scrum on the floor, the Knights tied it up and a jump ball went in favor of Northview to set up the final exchange and Mace's game-winner.
The Knights got balanced scoring as Mace led the way with 12 points, but Peters, Ball and Whitson each had 10 points.
Afterwards, Weddle noted his team's problem with slow starts, but was happy to claim the conference victory on a special night.
"Four out of our five games we haven't started well," Weddle said of falling behind in the opening period. "We've got to figure that out because that is going to bite us if we don't. These guys are so fired up in the locker room, I'm happy for them. It was a really, really strong week of practice and it was good to see them get a 'W' after that.
"A lot of people across the board from the administrative standpoint did a tremendous job working with Relay for Life," Weddle added. "We were very fortunate to partner with them and we're very thankful for all the people that came out to support it."
The Knights (3-2 overall, 2-0 WIC) are off until participating in the Wabash Valley Pizza Hut Classic beginning on Dec. 26.
Driver 0-3 5-8 5, Selburg 4-11 10-12 18, Bowman 1-4 0-0 2, Black 2-6 5-7 10, Miller 0-0 0-0 0, Newman 1-4 0-0 2, Settle 3-9 0-0 8, Collier 0-1 1-2 1. Totals: 11-38 21-29 46.
Peters 3-8 2-2 10, Ball 4-10 0-2 10, Hakman 0-2 0-0 0, Whitson 5-9 0-0 10, Mace 6-11 0-1 12, Tanoos 0-1 0-0 0, Ellis 1-7 2-2 5, Clark 0-0 0-0 0, Kimball 0-1 0-1 0, Ragan 0-0 1-2 1. Totals: 19-49 5-10 48.
3-point fieldgoals -- EW 3-14 (Settle 2-6, Black 1-4, Newman 0-2, Bowman 0-2), Nv 5-18 (Peters 2-4, Ball 2-8, Ellis 1-5, Mace 0-1). Total Rebounds -- EW 34 (Selburg 11, Driver 7), Nv 23 (Mace 6). Team rebounds -- EW 4, Nv 3. Total Fouls -- EW 15, Nv 21. Turnovers -- Ew 14, Nv 9.