Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

November 26, 2013

BOYS BASKETBALL: Northwestern preview

Squad has to replace a pair of All-Area players.

(Continued)

The Tigers’ big junior class also has 6-3 Logan Macaluso, 5-11 guard Blake Oakley, 6-4 forward Derek Doubet, 6-4 post Tyler Hudson, 6-0 guard Spencer Lubben and 6-1 forward Riley Hudson.

Oakley averaged 3.1 ppg as a sophomore. He is currently on the mend after tearing an ACL during the football season.

“That’s a big loss for us. He provides offense and a lot of of other things for us,” Gish said. “We hope to get him back in January. I know he’s eager to get back and we’re eager to get him back.

Northwestern will rely more on perimeter shooting than in past seasons. Gish will go with a lot of guard-heavy looks.

“A lot of it for us this year will come down to our shooting,” Gish said. “A lot of what we do on the defensive end will be dictated by how we’re shooting the basketball. We need to have good offensive possessions to be able to do the things that we want to do. Obviously, with that many guards, we want to pressure the basketball. At times that will mean full court and at times it will mean half court.”

Gish likes how his players are bringing energy to practice and how they are feeding off each other.

“They all get along. They all want success. The combination of those two things really helps out. When you take the floor for game night, they understand there are only so many minutes in a game and a role is very important whatever that role is. We believe they’ll step in and do a nice job,” he said.

Gish predicts a competitive battle in the Mid-Indiana Conference, and another loaded Class 3A Sectional 20 field.

PURPLE TIGERS' SCHEDULE Wednesday Madison-Grant Dec. 6 at Western Dec. 7 Tri-Central Dec. 10 at Frankfort Dec. 13 at Taylor Dec. 14 Mississinewa Dec. 20 Maconaquah Jan. 3 Twin Lakes Jan. 17-18 at Howard Co. Tourney Jan. 24 Cass Jan. 28 North Miami Jan. 31 at Carroll Feb. 1 Sheridan Feb. 7 at Tipton Feb. 8 Southwood Feb. 13 at Peru Feb. 18 at Hamilton Heights Feb. 21 Eastern Feb. 25 at Oak Hill

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