Wabash wins TRC title

By Eric Christiansen

What looked to be a barnburner turned into a bust for the Peru Tigers but a second straight outright Three Rivers Conference championship for the Wabash Apaches.

Wabash traveled to Peru with an 8-0 conference record and 17-4 overall while Peru entered the game at 7-1 in the TRC and 16-5 overall. The Apaches never trailed and ran away with an 80-45 win.

“This is a goal we set back in June,” Wabash head coach Paul Wright said. “They deserve it because I know how they worked since June and the fall. This is something the varsity players wanted to get done and it worked out great for us.”

With Peru missing two key players in Mathew Ross and Treyden Curtis, Wabash took advantage early and often.

“Half of our points and rebounds were gone tonight,” Peru head coach Eric Thompson said. “Mathew and Treyden average 20 to 30 [points] together. But the way Wabash was playing it may not have mattered. They played really well.”

Jasper Walters got the Apaches started with a three-pointer 15 seconds into the game. Peru's Pete Polk answered seconds later but Wabash's Trenton Daughtry hit from long range for a 6-2 Wabash lead that started an 11-1 run.

Trailing 14-3 Peru's Daunte Majors scored inside with 2:33 left in the first quarter but the Apaches got baskets from Elijah Vander Velden, two from Jared Holley and a three-pointer from Joe Leland in a 1:25 for a 23-5 lead.

Things didn't change a lot in the second quarter with the Apaches racing out to a 34-11 lead midway with 3:45 left in the half.
With Wabash leading 36-14 with 1:20 remaining in the first half Joe Leland made sure the Apaches stayed in control with three three-pointers to take a 45-16 lead into the locker room.

Wabash continued the rout leading 68-27 after three quarters.

“Our conference is definitely not easy,” Wright said. “We were fortunate to come out on top.

“Bluffton is a very good team and we are looking forward to the sectional.”

Peru is also looking ahead.

“Our focus is on sectional Tuesday night against a good Twin Lakes team,” Thompson added.

Holley led the Apaches with 19 points, six rebounds and four blocks while Leland had 15 points. Daughtry had 12 points, five rebounds and five assists, and Vogel had five points, six rebounds and seven assists.

Peru was led by Majors with 13 points, Kade Townsend with eight, Braxten Robbins with five, Pete Polk, Kash Bellar and Eli Walters with four points each and Michael Chandler with three points.

Wabash's JV team also handled Peru in a 64-23 win.

The Apaches shut out Peru 21-0 on its way to the win.

Andrew Dinkins led all scorers with 17 points.

Posted on 2020 Mar 03