The Pecatonica Indians compete against West Carroll earlier in the season. The Indians claimed a 76-27 victory.

By Christopher Johnson


The 2021 winter sports season was a success to some, a disappointment to others and very much appreciated by those athletes who were able to suit up for game play.

Considering what was facing students in the Pecatonica school district, as well as fans of winter basketball, getting any games in at all was a major success story. COVID19 made a decision to change how the games were scheduled.

There were some modifications to how the game had to be played this year. After many sports for the fall and winter season were initially canceled, a plan was put into place to give student athletes a chance to still do more in high school besides study.

Actual court time didn’t occur until early February for most teams across the State of Illinois. Those that were able to take the floor were asked to mask up. Media representatives were asked to assure notification of intent to cover events, and fan allowances were somewhat limited at the onset.

For the Pecatonica Indians boys and girls basketball teams, the 2021 winter season comes to an end this week with the final regular matches of the campaign being played.

It has been a successful, though abbreviated season as both the squads found themselves sitting near the top of each of their conferences, or in the hunt for top honors.

The actual regular season winners of the NUIC should be realized this week with post-season play not being allowed, there will be no State achievements to play for this year. Conference honors will be the greatest accomplishments.

On the boys side, only against one team has the scoreboard not reflected success and that setback occurred against Freeport Aquin.

On Wednesday, Feb. 24, the Aquin Catholic Bulldogs took down Pecatonica, 69-57, putting to end a season long win streak that pushed the Indians to a 7-0 season mark.

Two days later, Aquin gave the Indians their second loss of the season, this time it was a little closer with the Bulldogs coming out on top 58-48.

Aquin got the early edge after outpacing Pecatonica in the opening minutes in game two on the week’s schedule, giving them a 10-8 advantage heading into the second. The offense hit another level in the second though.

Pecatonica could not stop Aquin’s assault on the rim and saw their two-point disadvantage grow to eleven at the break, 30-19.

By the end of the third, the Indians deficit had grown even more as Aquin found itself in front 44-28. Pecatonica would have its best period of the night in the fourth, but would find their efforts come up short.

Paced by Trent Hetland who scored seven and Hunter Hoffman’s six, Pecatonica finished the night with 20 in the period.

Aquin scored 14, but came away with the 10-point winner 58-48, putting itself into a position of potential NUIC ownership as the last week of games play out this week.

The Lady Indians suffered the same fate to close the final week of February games. Pecatonica slipped to Dakota 40-31 on Monday, Feb. 22 and then succumbed to Freeport Aquin on Thursday, Feb. 25, 56-48.

Pecatonica is scheduled to take on Lena-Winslow this week, with two games to take place before the regular season comes to an end.

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