The 2017 portion of the schedule closed out on an average note as I posted an 18-6 (75 percent) record. Heading into the first week of 2018, my overall record is 94-36, which keeps me at 72 percent for the year.


DeKalb (5-3) at Wawasee (3-5): The Barons edged Wawasee, 57-46, a year ago. Logan Krause poured in 19 points in DeKalb’s 57-46 win over Central Noble. Austin Miller netted 12 points in the Warriors’ 34-30 loss to Saint Joseph. Matt’s pick: DeKalb 47, Wawasee 44.

Jimtown (2-5, 0-2 NIC) at Glenn (7-2, 4-0 NIC): The Jimmies eliminated Glenn, 41-37, from last season’s state tournament. Bill Pawlak managed just three points in Jimtown’s 68-41 loss at Concord. Khori Barker chipped in eight points in the Falcons’ 56-51 win at Tippecanoe Valley. Matt’s pick: Glenn 60, Jimtown 46.

Riley (9-0, 2-0 NIC) at Bremen (2-5, 0-3 NIC): The Lions dropped a 96-48 decision to top-ranked (Class 4A) Riley last season. Gabe Johnson came up with six points in the Wildcats’ 72-38 win at Plymouth. David Slos contributed four points in Bremen’s 49-48 double overtime victory over Central Noble. Matt’s pick: Riley 77, Bremen 57.


Jimtown (2-6, 0-3 NIC) at Saint Joseph (6-3, 2-1 NIC): The Indians marched past Jimtown, 45-35, a season ago. Preston Phillips tallied seven points in the Jimmies’ 67-30 loss at Glenn. Brady Powers racked up 13 points for Saint Joseph against Wawasee. Matt’s pick: Saint Joseph 62, Jimtown 43.


Elkhart Central (3-6, 1-3 NIC) at Riley (10-0, 3-0 NIC): The Wildcats needed overtime to claim a 63-59 win over Elkhart Central last season. Adrean Sims had five points in the Blazers’ 54-41 loss to Fairfield. Trevor Fortune scored 10 points in Riley’s 70-24 win over Bremen. Matt’s pick: Riley 71, Elkhart Central 56.

Goshen (3-5, 0-1 NLC) at Concord (3-5, 0-1 NLC): The RedHawks posted a 40-38 overtime victory against Concord in last season’s sectional. Philip Wertz scored 11 points in Goshen’s 57-55 loss to East Noble. Michael Johnson netted 25 points, including the game-winning basket, in Concord’s 51-49 win over Hammond Bishop Noll. Matt’s pick: Concord 46, Goshen 44.

New Prairie (4-4, 2-2 NIC) at Washington (7-2, 3-0 NIC): The Panthers slipped by New Prairie, 44-40, a year ago. Bryce Bloode came up with 12 points in the Cougars’ 71-31 victory at Boone Grove. Alex Francoeur tallied eight points in Washington’s 80-54 win over Clay. Matt’s pick: Washington 65, New Prairie 52.

NorthWood (7-2, 1-0 NIC) at Wawasee (3-6, 1-0 NLC): The Warriors suffered a 59-33 loss to NorthWood last year. Brad Delio came up with 12 points in the Panthers’ 63-42 win over Mishawaka. Trevon Coleman recorded eight points in Wawasee’s 64-54 loss to DeKalb. Matt’s pick: NorthWood 54, Wawasee 41.

Penn (5-1, 2-1 NIC) at Adams (5-6, 1-2 NIC): The Kingsmen came up on the short end of a 69-60 decision to Adams in their last meeting. Drew Lutz racked up 12 points in Penn’s 71-61 win over Elkhart Memorial. Shakell Johnson poured in 27 points in the Eagles’ 84-73 loss to No. 4 (Class 3A) Greensburg. Matt’s pick: Penn 68, Adams 64.

Plymouth (5-5, 0-1 NLC) at Elkhart Memorial (4-3, 1-0 NLC): The Chargers claimed a 53-51 win at Plymouth last season. Kadin McCrammer chipped in 15 points in the Pilgrims’ 63-52 loss to No. 1 (Class 2A) Westview. Iyan Jennings finished with eight points for Elkhart Memorial against Penn. Matt’s pick: Elkhart Memorial 55, Plymouth 53.

Triton (3-4) at Glenn (8-2): The Trojans marched their way to a 39-35 win over Glenn a season ago. Ross Johnson contributed 22 points in Triton’s 52-35 win over South Bend Trinity. Carter Yung had a career-high 14 points for Glenn against Jimtown. Matt’s pick: Glenn 61, Triton 54.

Warsaw (4-7, 0-1 NLC) at Northridge (4-3, 1-0 NLC): The Tigers clawed their way to a 36-33 win over Northridge in last year’s sectional opener. Jaylen Reese came up with seven points in Warsaw’s 43-38 win over Fishers. Jackson Erekson mustered seven points in the Raiders’ 64-50 win over Knox. Matt’s pick: Northridge 52, Warsaw 43.


Adams (5-6) at Elkhart Memorial (4-3): The Eagles soared to an 87-74 win against Elkhart Memorial last year. Sidney Jefferies netted 11 points for Adams in a 66-54 win over Indianapolis Home School. Trey Gallope had 12 points in the Chargers’ 50-49 loss at Valparaiso. Matt’s pick: Adams 62, Elkhart Memorial 59.

Angola (4-3) at Wawasee (3-6): The Hornets swarmed past Wawasee, 52-34, a year ago. Jarret Schultz scored 10 points in Angola’s 40-38 loss at Westview. Cayden Wegener finished with 10 points in the Warriors’ 52-44 win against Knox. Matt’s pick: Angola 51, Wawasee 46.

Bethany Christian (2-5) at Bremen (2-6): The Lions captured a 49-45 victory over Bethany Christian a season ago. Lucas Brownsberger-Keyes poured in 17 points in the Bruins’ 48-40 loss to Elkhart Christian. Justin Zumbrun scored just five points for Bremen against Riley. Matt’s pick: Bremen 43, Bethany Christian 40.

Niles (3-1) at Mishawaka (5-5): The Vikings edged Mishawaka, 50-49, last season. Robert Brown tallied 17 points in Niles’ 60-50 win over Kalamazoo Loy Norrix. Grant Jablonski recorded 12 points for the Cavemen in a 63-42 loss to NorthWood. Matt’s pick: Mishawaka 57, Niles 55.

Penn (5-1) at Valparaiso (6-3): The Kingsmen rallied for a 51-48 win over Valparaiso last year. Noah Applegate poured in 26 points for Penn in a 68-44 win over New Prairie. Nate Aerts managed just 10 points in the Vikings’ 62-55 loss to Zionsville. Matt’s pick:  Penn 64, Valparaiso 62.

Plymouth (5-5) at Tippecanoe Valley (2-7): The Pilgrims earned a 48-37 victory over Tippecanoe Valley a year ago. Clay Hilliard netted 26 points in Plymouth’s 68-65 loss to Lakeland. Parker Dalrymple racked up 16 points for the Vikings against Glenn. Matt’s pick: Plymouth 50, Tippecanoe Valley 47.