CHALMERS — The Winamac boys basketball team has seen its share of struggles this season but has played its best ball when it has counted.
On Tuesday night at Frontier the Warriors rose to the challenge again as they downed the Falcons in a Midwest Conference matchup, 57-50.
With the win the Warriors (8-7 overall) remain undefeated in conference play at 4-0. They take to the road again tonight when they travel to Tri-County (10-5, 3-1 MWC) to try and keep their conference record clean.
The Falcons (6-11, 3-3) opened the game in a box-and-one with Warrior sharpshooter Adam Gruenig as the center of attention. Gruenig got a quick look early and buried the shot from behind the arc but was harassed most of the night. It took his Warrior teammates a few minutes to digest what was going on but when they adjusted they made the best of things.
With Gruenig bottled up, J.T. Garnett, Parker Fox and Levi Schultz stepped up and hit some big shots to send Winamac out to a 13-10 lead after one quarter of play.
In the second frame the Warriors started to stumble a bit. They opened the quarter on a 5-0 run to up the score to 18-10 and forced Frontier into a timeout. It was a different Falcon club that took the floor after the timeout as the Warriors struggled against the Falcons defense and couldn’t stop their pass and cut offense. Before they knew what had hit them Winamac was looking at a 11-1 run by Frontier and the Falcons took a 23-22 lead over the Warriors. Winamac tried to hold the ball for the last 30 seconds but missed on its attempt and went into the break with a 26-24 deficit.
Coach Kyle Johnson’s half-time talk must have been nothing short of inspirational, for when they took the floor for the second half they began playing some of their best basketball of the year. The Warriors quickly opened on a 12-0 forcing coach Rush McColley to take his second timeout of the quarter with his squad down 36-26. The run was devastating for Frontier as it was apparent Winamac had taken the wind out of the sails. Winamac went on to take a 43-34 lead after three.