The Centier Bank Performers of the Week are Valparaiso junior guard Brandon Newman and Culver Academy sophomore forward Deontae Craig. In Wednesday’s 63-46 win over Portage in the opening round of the Class 4A Chesterton Sectional, the 6-foot-3 standout scored 21 points, going 9-of-15 from the field, including two 3-point baskets, and 1-of-2 from the charity stripe. In Friday’s 59-41 triumph over Michigan City in the semifinal round, Newman overcame a slow start to score 12 of his 16 points in the second quarter with Indiana University men’s basketball coach Archie Miller in attendance. Then, in Saturday’s championship game, Newman netted 26 points and hauled down 11 rebounds to help the Vikings to a 46-43 victory over defending champion Merrillville. Valparaiso (20-5) will next play Elkhart Memorial (13-12) in opening game of next Saturday’s Michigan City Regional.
In Saturday’s Class 3A South Bend Washington sectional championship game against No. 6 Mishawaka Marian, the 6-4 standout grabbed an offensive rebound and was fouled with 0.2 seconds left. After missing his first free throw attempt, Craig knocked down the second shot to give the No. 4 Eagles a 48-47 victory and their second consecutive sectional title. He finished with a game-high 21 points in the contest. Earlier in the tournament, Craig scored 13 points in Wednesday’s 56-20 win over New Prairie and added 17 points in Friday’s 77-44 triumph against South Bend Saint Joseph. Culver Academy (19-6) takes on Hammond (19-5) in the opening game of next Saturday’s LaPorte Regional.
The Centier Bank Performer of the Week is open to any male-female student athlete who participates in any IHSAA sanctioned sport and whose school is in the Centier Bank geographic area.