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SuperSam’s Area Basketball Picks (Feb. 23, 2024)

These are the Final area game picks before sectionals roll along. Here are the 5 best games from tonight for boys basketball as well as girls basketball state finals picks. The NECC and TRC conference races still have to be decided.

Bishop Luers (17-5, 6-2 SAC) @ Carroll (11-12, 5-3 SAC)

One more SAC game is still left to be played as Luers and Carroll prepare for the upcoming state tournament. 

Luers has certainly seen their share of tough wins and hard but productive lessons in defeats. But Luers has set themselves up to be ready for the sectional of doom in 2A Sectional 37, hosted by Bluffton. 

The Truesdale kids obviously bring effort and a lot of talent to the table but they have some sneaky depth to this team led by Wes Javins and Danny Kelly. This is a very good Luers team that Coach Coffing has led this season. 

Carroll has had their ups and downs but it appears that the Chargers are finding their groove at the right time, and a Ryan Abbott led Chargers team is very dangerous in the playoffs. Carroll has won 5 of their last 6 games, and a lot of that comes from playing 4 quarters of basketball, finishing off games, and an improved defense. 

This is an exciting contest at the Charger FieldHouse. I have Carroll edging Luers in a fun basketball game for bragging rights. 

Players to Watch 

Bishop Luers: Dereon Truesdale Junior Combo Guard 

Carroll: Jaiyre Sampson Junior Point Guard

Carroll by 4 in a SuperSam Upset Special

Central Noble (15-7, 6-3 NECC) @ Fairfield (17-5, 8-1 NECC)

At this point, we don’t need to get too in depth here. This is championship basketball from here on out. Whoever can play fundamentally sounded and strong team basketball is going to win this game. 

Both teams have the talent and the skill, but the difference for me so far is Fairfield’s size and their depth is stronger. And with this being at the Falcon’s Nest, this is a much harder task for CN to pull this off. 

I think this game is close, but I have Fairfield claiming a share of an NECC title. I also have Lakeland beating Angola to get the share of the title.

Players to Watch

CN: Isaiah Gard Senior Power Forward

Fairfield: Carson Smith Senior Combo Guard 

Fairfield by 6

Concordia (11-11) @ Columbia City (15-7)

Don’t let these records fool you. These are two very good teams that get a rare rematch before sectionals despite not being in the same conference. 

These two met back on Dec. 27 where Concordia rallied from a double digit hole to beat Columbia City 52-47 at the Delta Holliday Tournament. This is a game that is going to have a game of runs and scoring coming at a premium. 

Defense, rebounding, and good offensive possessions will be key to coming out of this game victorious. I have the Eagles avenging their earlier loss in a tight one. 

Players to Watch

Concordia: Cole Hayworth Senior Power Forward (Grace College Commit)

Columbia City: Brady Hartman Senior Forward 

Columbia City by 2

(13-8) Norwell @ (12-11) Homestead 

This is a very interesting matchup at Spartan arena as both Norwell and Homestead enter this game red hot. Norwell has won 5 of their last 6 games, while Homestead has won 4 of their last 6. 

Norwell’s defense and strong team basketball shows that they still play at a championship pedigree led by Ashton Federspiel in the post and Cohen Bailey at the point guard position. Adam McBride’s 15 points helped Norwell edged Concordia on Monday. 

The return of Will Jamison has certainly brought momentum in Homestead’s favor heading into postseason play, but other players are stepping up and starting to mature as the season progresses. 

This is definitely one of the most exciting games of the night. I have Homestead in a SuperSam upset special. 

Players to Watch

Norwell: Ashton Federspiel Senior Power Forward/Center 

Homestead: Wyatt Weaver Junior Small Forward 

Homestead by 3 in a SuperSam Upset Special

Wabash (16-5, 7-1 TRC) @ Peru (12-9, 5-3 TRC)

Whitko’s 56-51 win at rival Manchester opens the door for a possible TRC share between Manchester and Wabash. The Squires already clinched a share. But now the door is open for the Apaches to take the other half of this conference.

But this Peru team is no joke. They are averaging 64 points per game. So Wabash will need the TRC’s 2nd ranked defense to be stellar tonight on the road. 

I have the Apaches edging out Peru in an entertaining ballgame. 

Players to Watch

Wabash: Trevor Daughtry Senior Guard 

Peru: Matthew Rogers Senior Forward 

Wabash by 1

Girls Basketball State Finals Picks 

1A: Lanesville by 12 over Marquette Catholic 

2A: Bishop Luers by 6 over Brownstown Central

3A: Norwell by 2 over Gibson Southern

4A: Lawrence Central by 8 over Lake Central

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