Oracles drop Hoosier Conference opener
by John J. Dunn, Contributing Sportswriter
Delphi rebounded with a 63-40 win at North Newton Saturday night after dropping its Hoosier Conference opener at Benton Central 48-38 on Friday.
Blaine Walters led with a season-high 16 points, and Tyler Ross added 14 points and seven rebounds in the Oracles victory over the Spartans.
“Tonight was a good showing for us from an offensive standpoint,” Delphi coach Adam Ballard said. “We showed, once again, that we have multiple guys that can put points on the board and that we have a great TEAM approach to offense.”
“We did a much better job of attacking the basket, which led to more points, higher shooting percentages, and fewer turnovers,” he added. “I feel that we have a great group of unselfish players that are just beginning to realize their potential as a team. I look for us to improve even more this week and throughout the year.”
The Oracles took early control of a rugged game, taking a 15-8 lead to close the 1st period, and then scored the first eight points of the 2nd period to finish a 12-0 run with a 23-8 lead with 5:47 left in the half.
Delphi (4-2) would not lose its double-digit lead the rest of the way, extending the margin to 32-12 at halftime and 48-22 at the end of the 3rd period to cruise to the final 23-point margin of victory.
Mason Lane had nine points, Adam Shanks added seven points and six rebounds, Brent Hawn had seven points and a team-high five assists, Adam Zink had six points, and Weston Windell and Cole Kesling had two apiece.
The Oracles outrebounded the Spartans 36-24.
“I thought that we played well this weekend,” Ballard added. “Defensively, we are really starting to show consistency.”
“Our defense and rebounding must be our biggest sources of pride,” he said. “We have made great strides over the past week in this area.”
Delphi plays at Clinton Prairie Friday with a 6 pm JV tip-off, before hosting Faith Christian on Saturday in a triple-header, with a 4 pm JV tipoff, a girl’s varsity game at 5:30 pm, followed by the boys’ varsity at 7 pm.
at Benton Central
The Oracles dropped a tough one to the Bison in a game that was closer than the final score would indicate.
Delphi had two 3-pointers waved off in the 3rd period by the travel-happy whistle-blowers; including a buzzer-beater that video replay confirmed was released before the horn that would have kept the game even closer.
The Oracles fought hard to overcome the adversity to keep it close until Benton Central hit 7-of-10 free throws in the final 2:36 to close the game.
“I felt as though we let one get away from us Friday night,” Ballard said. “We played extremely well defensively and executed our scouting report to perfection.”
“Offensively, however, we were not as assertive as we needed to be and that is reflected by our turnovers and low shooting percentage,” he added. “We left way too many points at the free throw line as well. These are things that we must improve moving forward.”
BC used a full court press and a 1-2-2 half-court zone defense in an effort to slow the pace, but the Delphi was able to penetrate and create multiple layup opportunities to take a 12-7 lead at the end of the 1st period.
The Oracles held onto a 15-13 lead at halftime before the Bison took their first lead in the decisive 3rd period during an 11-2 run that included three straight travel calls against Delphi, one of which wiped away a 3-pointer.
Trailing 29-22, the Oracles rallied with consecutive treys from Hawn start the 4th period to close to within one with 5:44 remaining, and again at 31-30 after a Walters basket with 5:13 left, but could not get any closer.
Ross led with 15 points, followed by Lane with eight, Hawn six, Walters five and a team-high eight boards, and Shanks and Zink added two points apiece.
Delphi again won the rebound battle 31-23 over the taller Bison, but committed a season-high 24 turnovers.
JV splits weekend
The Oracles JV (2-3) defeated the North Newton 48-42 Saturday after losing to BC 51-30 on Friday.
Daniel Jakes had 18 points against the Spartans, followed by Kain Myer with 14, Cade Murray with 9, Weston Windell, John Beale and Vladimir Danicic with 2 each, and Ben Lucas with 1.
Against the Bison, Murray led with 9 points; Myer added 8, Windell 7, Jakes 4, and Lucas 2.