Coaching Wisdom at its Finest
Coming off of a district championship last year and with six players returning off that squad, expectations were high for Centennial, but they got off to a shaky start losing their first two games and, in turn, fell to 3-4 overall. With a big game upcoming for the Patriots, head coach Tom Aipperspach called for a 5:00 AM practice the day before the game against Mountain View and his plan worked to perfection.
The Patriots were stellar defensively with most of the credit going to Junior Daryl Robertson as his suffocating defense was troublesome for whoever was running the point for Mountain View on Tuesday night. The Mavericks were held to 40 points, by far their lowest output of the season. Brandon Luedtke struggled which was evident by a few missed layups that we aren't accustomed to seeing. Aaron Maffey carried the load offensively for Centennial as he had 21 points, including three huge trifectas when the Mavericks tried to get the game close. We all knew Mountain View was not going unbeaten, so this loss might help them refocus going into Christmas Break, but for now it creates a three-way tie at the top of the 5A SIC Standings.
The other two teams tied with Mountain View at the top are Borah and Eagle. The Lions have played like a completely different ball club after their one point loss at Mountain View. Ben Tucakovic has been outstanding on both ends of the floor and he had a double-double against Boise to lead the way offensively. Super sophomore Isaiah Wright is starting to find his groove offensively and if his shots start falling on a regular basis, Borah is nearly unbeatable.
Eagle just continues to quietly roll their opponents. Braiden Shaw had yet another double-double, but against Timberline, two other players were in double figures. Connor Kent had 18 points and DJ Dean chipped in ten of his own and Eagle scored 61 on the night. Timberline is still the biggest mystery of the 5A SIC because all of their wins are teams they are supposed to beat and their losses are to superior teams, so at this point, the middle of the pack is right where they should be.
Rocky Mountain defeated Vallivue as the Falcons continue to struggle on the offensive end. The Grizzlies have been competitive in every game and moved into sole possession of 7th place in the 5A SIC. In a battle of two winless teams, Meridian came out on top which gave head coach Mike Graefe his first conference win.