Heart of a Champion fuels Hononegah's basketball upset over Huntley


2023-2024 Hononegah Indians Boys Basketball Team

On paper, Hononegah at 11-16 on the season should not have been able to beat a 20-10 4th-seeded Huntley team. Huntley came in winners of 8 of their last 9 games. But as former NBA champion Coach Rudy Tomjanovich said,"Never underestimate the heart of a champion".

Hononegah boys basketball wasn’t ready for this season to end yet. I think they could have been playing the defending NBA champion Denver Nuggets and they would have put up a great fight tonight.

After falling behind early 14-5, they got some shots to fall and jumped into a zone defense, which is not a normal thing for the Indians. The change-up in defense seemed to throw off the 4th seeded Red Raiders for most of the game.

It didn’t seem to slow down senior Ethan Blackmore, however, as he ended his high school career scoring 26 points in the 65-62 loss.

Hononegah was led by Isaiah Houi. The Eastern Illinois football recruit had 18 points including 2 big floaters late in the 4th to help the Indians hold off Huntley. The only other Indians who scored in double figures were senior Cole Warren with 11 points and senior Landon Claudy with 10 points including a huge late free throw that pushed the lead to 3. A late Steph Curry logo 3 attempt from Ethan Blackmore came up short and the buzzer sounded as Hononegah beat Huntley 65-62.

Next up for the Indians is a 3rd game against NIC 10 champion Guilford from Rockford East on Friday. Tip is set for 7 p.m. If you can’t make it to the game, I recommend listening to the voice of the Hononegah Indians, Andy Gannon, on mostly90s.com or by downloading their Big Radio app.

Thanks to the IHSA, Big Radio and Andy Gannon as well as the Hononegah Boys Basketball Facebook page for the image and information used in the story.

A self-described sports evangelist, Harold Bone is the Rockton-Roscoe News sports editor who is committed to finding stories behind the box scores and discovering engaging sports content. Harold has a background in many forms of media - everything from radio to TV. He has spent the last 25-plus years attending, following, and cheering for teams and athletes from the pros and colleges to local high schools and youth recreational leagues. Harold is passionate about creating engaging stories for athletes and sports fans in the Rockton/Roscoe/South Beloit, Illinois communities. Got a story idea? Contact Harold via email at harold@roscoenews.com and follow him on Twitter at @SPRTSEDRRNews. Sign up for the daily Roscoe News newsletter HERE.

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