Three games in three nights proved a tall order for either South Bend St. Joseph or the Plymouth Pilgrims in the Championship Game of the Sectionals. Not since 2010, had the Pilgrims captured a Sectional title until Saturday nights 74-45 win over the Indians.
“I’m just so proud of this boys”, said Head Coach Ryan Bales. “Winning three games in three days in one of the toughest Sectionals in state….says a lot of this teams character. We came off an incredible win against Mishawaka Marian where we just played so well as a unit. Taking care of our first game against Jimtown. I’m just so proud of them.”
“We were due for one of these games. We have the shooters to make three’s. We also have the players that make things happen inside. I felt our offensive game was just balanced the entire four quarters. I also thought our defensive play eventually wore them down. Yea…we may have given St. Joe momentum at times, but we still recovered well. Plus, again, St. Joe is a really good, well coached team.”, said Bales.
For a second straight game, Senior Joe Knapp led the Pilgrims in scoring, with 20 points. His 24 points the night before against Mishawaka Marian, were a huge reason for getting Plymouth to the Championship game.
Joe is playing so well right now. He’s creating and reading scoring opportunities. He has made a huge stride this season in becoming a ball player. He’s tough to guard right now.”, said Bales.
Staying out of foul trouble was a key for the Plymouth star Mac Mercer. Although a victum of a couple of questionable whistles, Mercer found himself with two early fouls and leaving his coach with a decision to keep him out or leave him on the court.
“Well, Mac (Mercer) played well for us. Yea, he may have had to sit for a stretch, but when he was out their he was making a difference. Opponents are going to keep going after him, even harder now that we are in the playoffs. Mac just needs to be a little smarter on his fouls he’s getting called on.”, added Bales.