The New Buffalo Bison Varsity basketball team needed to secure a win against Centreville to remain atop the BCS blue division last Friday night, Feb. 10.
It was Winterfest night, and the gym was packed with hopeful Bison fans. Centreville was a tough opponent, and the Bison had only won on the road by one point when the two teams met earlier this season. This game proved to be nothing less than exciting. The Bison came out strong and held a 20-17 lead after the first quarter. They continued to put up points and capture important rebounds, and led 35-30 at the half. At the end of three, the Bison led by 48-43.
Centreville continued to challenge New Buffalo, and the fourth quarter remained close. In the end, Gaige Rice sank two critical free throws with seconds left to put the Bison on top for good at 61-59. Rice had a strong game overall and scored 10 points total. Again, strong play by Seth Margaritis, who scored 18 points and Julian Hymes, who ended with 14, helped propel the Bison to this important win. Ryan Butler scored 10 points and was a big factor in the game with seven rebounds. Creo Brewster had five points and Sotiri Margaritis and Patrick Griffin each scored two. The Bison must win their last two conference games at White Pigeonand Cassopolis to place first in the BCS Conference, Blue Division.
Tuesday, Feb. 14, saw the Bison facing Buchanan, a team they hadlost to by 28 points early in the season. This was not going to be the case this time around. The Bison came out with intensity, focus, and determined to stay in this game. They did just that. The game was close throughout, with Buchanan leading 12-10 after the first quarter, 31-24 at the half, and 44-40 after the third. Behind Creo Brewster’s game high 18 points and his game-tying three point basket with seconds to go, the Bison tied the game up at 56 and sent it to overtime. Unfortunately, a quick five points by the Bucks never allowed the Bison to take the lead, and Buchanan ended up winning 68-63. In addition to Brewster’s 18 points, Seth Margaritis had 11, Hymes had nine, Garrett Mullen and Rice each had seven, Butler scored six, Nigel Durham had three and Tim Mayer scored two.
New Buffalo has an 11-5 overall record and sits at 6-1 in the conference.