At halftime, it appeared as if Archbold was going to run Wauseon out of the gym. While Archbold held on to win the boys non-league opener against the Indians, the Streaks needed to hold on after Wauseon got back into the game with a big second half run.
The Indians even took the lead, but thanks to free throws down the stretch from Jeron Williams, the Streaks took the boys basketball season opener Saturday night in Archbold, 56-50.
The win was the first for longtime assistant Joe Frank, who took over the Archbold program from Doug Krauss.
“We had them dead in the water and all of a sudden they start playing with a fire in their belly,” Frank said of the Indians battling back. “It wasn’t that they turned us over a bunch, we started getting tentative and a little undisciplined. We weren’t running the offense we wanted to.”
The second half was a complete reversal from the first half for the Indians. Down 34-18 at the half, the Tribe went on a 17-4 run in the third period to cut the deficit to 38-35 by the end of the period. After plays from Levi Seiler and Trent Armstrong, the Indians took a 41-38 lead early in the final period.
“We didn’t make any drastic adjustments at halftime,” Wauseon coach Chad Burt said of the difference between the halves. “We came in the second half and played with a lot more urgency and made some plays and made a game of it.”
Archbold did battle back. Andrew Hogrefe knocked down a triple with 6:25 to play to knot the game once again.
“At the end of the day, our kids made plays when they had to,” mentioned Frank. “It’s a lot more fun learning lessons with a win than a loss. We’ll take some things from this and get better.”
The game went back-and-forth, but Archbold’s ability to get inside and get to the free throw line took over. The Streaks got a stop on defense in the final minute, then Williams was able to stretch the lead out at the free throw line.
Different defenses could not stop Archbold in the first half. Trying a man-to-man, a 1-3-1 and a 2-3 zone, Rigo Ramos had an answer each time as he buried four treys in the first half on his way to 14 points by the break, where the Streaks led 34-18.
“When you’re free and easy and loosy-goosy and the ball is going through the basket, life’s good,” is how Frank described the opening half of the game. “In the second half, that didn’t happen. We got some stops when we finally needed to.”
“We tried to mix up defenses,” admitted Burt. “They were very well prepared for everything we threw at them. Bottom line is they have a lot of kids who can score.”
Ramos led Archbold with 17 points in the win. Elijah Zimmerman and Austin Wiemken each added 10 points. Seiler led the Indians with 15 points. Armstrong added 13 and Sean Brock had 10.
Each team had a game this week get postponed. Archbold was to play at Edgerton Thursday, but that game has been pushed to Feb. 5. Wauseon was to play at Genoa Tuesday, but that is now Feb. 19.
Both teams play Saturday as the Streaks visit Kalida and the Indians will host Fairview.
Reach Randy Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org