By Doug Schroder


BYRON – Things were looking rather bleak for the Winnebago Indians in the third quarter of their game against Rockford Christian at the IHSA Regional final in Byron on Friday, Feb. 26. The first half was a seesaw battle where each team took leads, with the half ending on a last second shot by the Royal Lions that tied the game at 27 all.

The Royal Lions came out hot in the third quarter though, draining many 3s, and building up a 14 point lead at 45-31. It looked as though the once No. 1 rated in 2A Indians were going to get sent home for the season. But then the shots started falling and the steals started coming as the Indians started a comeback in the third quarter that continued through the fourth quarter.

Ty Waller and Dan Rosenstiel then connected on a couple of 3s to pull within 58-57 with 1:17 left in the game. Then, with under 20 seconds to go in the game Jess Smith hit a 3 that put the Indians in the lead at 60-58. After the teams exchanged turnovers, Rockford Christian was able to come within one point while going 1 for 2 from the free throw line.

The Indians got the ball back and Andrew Morrissey was fouled with 5.2 seconds to go. He made one of two free throws to give the Indians a 61-59 lead.

Rockford Christian then inbounded the ball and got in a half-court shot before the buzzer sounded. The shot land far from the mark and the Indians found themselves the 2016 Byron Regional Champions.

Brandon Suggs led the team with 21 points scored, followed by Ty Waller with 12 and Isaiah Whitehead with 10 points.

Next up for the Indians is a game against Kewanee at the Princeton Sectional on Wednesday, March 2.

Bago Byron Regional Champs 1

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