By DAVID VANTRESS
THE GOSHEN NEWS
There’s nothing like a loss to bring a team back to reality.
That’s exactly what happened to the Goshen boys basketball team last Saturday night at DeKalb, as the then 3-0 Redskins found an early season stmbling block in a 51-46 loss to the Barons.
Goshen coach Brian Bechtel said the loss was an important lesson for his team — one the Redskins seem to be absorbing, if this week’s practice sessions are any indication.
“We aren’t good enough to just show up and beat teams,” Bechtel said.
A sluggish, lackluster opening 10 minutes of the DeKalb game set the tone for the loss, Bechtel said.
“When you have to call time out twice in the first 10 minutes to get your team to play with intensity, that’s a sign that it might not be your night,” Bechtel said.
The flat effort out of the gate was a reflection of the Redskins’ practice during the week, Bechtel said.
“Sometimes, you really do play like you practice,” Bechtel said.
This week’s practices have been much better, with the Redskins’ seniors taking the lead.
“They’re playing harder in practice, setting the tone, talking more,” Bechtel said.
If there was a saving grace to the DeKalb loss, Bechtel added, it’s that it came in a nonconference game.
“You don’t want a loss like that in conference,” Bechtel said.
And NLC play begins this week, as the Redskins travel to Middlebury to take on Northridge.
The Raiders (3-2) have had their own early season struggles: They opened the season with consecutive losses to Elkhart Central and Westview — the latter in triple overtime in Emma Nov. 24.
But the Raiders have won three straight since, and will be opening NLC play against the Redskins on an up note.
Goshen is outrebounding its opponents 114-104 so far in 2012-13, and that’s a trend Bechtel would like to see continue — especially against a taller, athletic team like Northridge.
Offensively so far this season, the Redskins are led by senior forward Sam Stegelmann, who is averaging 17.5 ppg and 6.5 rpg. Senior guard Jesse Good is averaging 11.5 ppg and freshman point guard Brady Bechtel 9.5 ppg. and 2.5 apg.