GOSHEN — The NECC tournament wrapped up and that combined with the rest of the slate of high school boys basketball outcomes made for another pretty good week in the prediction business.
The picks in the NECC were perfect up until the championship when the West Noble Chargers ended Westview’s bid for a fifth straight tournament title. The 9-1 mark in the NECC and a 7-2 mark in other games made for a 16-3 week (84.2 percent).
The other missed calls were Northridge over NorthWood and Wawasee over Elkhart Memorial.
The year-to-date record is 82-24 (77.4).
FW Canterbury at Bethany Christian — This series is even at 10-10 in recent meetings after Canterbury’s 66-45 victory in last season’s sectional. Howe School is the only common opponent. Bethany defeated Howe 72-35 and Canterbury was a 92-29 winner. Canterbury is averaging 66.2 points per game on offense and the Bruins are going to try and slow the Cavaliers down. FW Canterbury.
NorthWood at Goshen — Goshen was a 55-47 winner when these two squared off last season. NorthWood has a slim 14-13 advantage in recent meetings. Both teams have played Fairfield and Northridge. Goshen defeated Fairfield 44-42 and lost to Northridge 53-33. NorthWood topped Fairfield 54-37 and lost to Northridge 54-52. NorthWood has multiple scoring options as Zach Zurcher, Jonathan Wilkinson, Will Stueve and Baxton Linville were all in double figures in an 89-55 win over Lakeland last Tuesday. NorthWood.
Westview at Fairfield — This is a rematch of an NECC second-round game from last week that the Westview Warriors won 71-55. The Warriors have a 27-11 edge in the series over the past 20 years. Prairie Heights stands out among the common foes. Westview was a 79-69 winner while Fairfield dropped a 68-66 decision to Heights. Westview’s point guard Jordyn Bontrager sprained an ankle in last Saturday’s NECC championship game with West Noble and if he is not 100 percent the Falcons could make this one more interesting. Westview.
Warsaw at Concord — The last meeting in this series saw the Warsaw Tigers emerge with a 41-39 win in triple overtime in last season’s sectional at North Side Gym in Elkhart. Warsaw has won 20 of the last 27 meetings with the Minutemen. Concord will need big games from Ramon Johnson and Filip Serwatka plus some help from others in the scoring department. It should be a close won and could come down to the home-court advantage. Concord.
Wawasee at Plymouth — The Plymouth Pilgrims were 57-30 winners last season and have won 15 of the last 22 meetings with the Warriors. Wawasee defeated Elkhart Central 57-44 last Saturday for its second win of the season. Plymouth is always a tough place to play and that might be a little too much for the young Warriors. Plymouth.
Fremont at West Noble — The West Noble Chargers (11-0) are one of only three teams left in the state that are unbeaten. Greensburg (13-0) and Covington (9-0) are the others. West Noble is coming off a 61-40 win over Westview in the finals of the NECC tournament. It’s the first conference tourney championship for the Chargers since 1974 when they defeated Westview 74-43. West Noble was a 71-49 winner last season while Fremont holds a 14-12 edge in recent meetings. West Noble.
Hamilton at Lakeland — The Lakeland Lakers have dominated this series with a 21-0 record over the past 20 seasons, including a 44-42 thriller a year ago. Fremont is among the common opponents. Lakeland was a 73-49 winner while Hamilton dropped an 83-51 decision to the Eagles. Lakeland.
Elkhart Memorial at Northridge — The Northridge Raiders were a 51-43 winner last season. Memorial has a slim 13-12 edge in recent matchups with the Raiders. Memorial has won four of its last six games with one of the losses to Penn 81-51. Northridge’s only losses have been to Penn by scores of 68-65 and 78-66. The second loss was just last Tuesday and that should give the Raiders some extra incentive. Northridge.
Jimtown at Westview — The Westview Warriors were a 53-30 winner last season and have a 12-5 lead in recent meetings with Jimtown. The Jimmies are one of the top defensive teams in the state giving up 40.5 points per game, which is third best in the state. Westview is averaging 60.9 points per contest. Westview.
Howe School at Elkhart Christian — The ECA Eagles have won 10 of the last 12 games in the series, including an 82-27 decision last season. Both schools have played Hamilton and Bethany Christian. Howe lost to Hamilton 90-31 and Bethany 72-35. The Eagles defeated Hamilton 68-46 and Bethany 82-28. ECA.
Whitko at West Noble — West Noble was a 53-41 winner last season while Whitko has won five of the last nine contests in the series. Wawasee is among the common foes. West Noble defeated the Warriors 52-49 and Whitko dropped a 48-36 decision. West Noble.
Fairfield at NorthWood — This will be the third attempt to play this one that was originally slated for Dec. 14. The Panthers posted a 71-41 win over Fairfield a year ago and NorthWood has an 18-6 lead in recent meetings with the Falcons. Fairfield led by Joe Line is an improved team but NorthWood has most of its players back from last year’s game. NorthWood.
Westview at Central Noble — Westview defeated the Cougars 66-56 during the regular season a year ago and 55-35 in the sectional. Central Noble is struggling this season with the Cougars lone win over Oregon-Davis 48-44. Westview.