On paper, Churubusco’s boys basketball team and Marquette Catholic appear almost identical.
The Eagles are 17-8. Marquette is 16-9. Both teams are 5-6 on the road. Both teams average about 67 points per game.
The squads both tally about 27 rebounds per game.
Where Churubusco will likely have advantage is on defense, where the Eagles average 8.5 steals per game to Marquette Catholic’s three.
Playing a team with no common opponents, there’s a lot of unknowns for Churubusco heading into Saturday morning’s first round of regional play.
What’s no secret, however, is the Eagles’ ability to win in the last part of the season.
Colin Mullins? I don’t think he’s been at the top of any scouting reports this season, but while Jalen Paul, Dakota Barkley and Luke Foote were holding the spotlight all season, Mullins knew his time would come.
He knew he could shoot the ball.
When he stepped onto the court with the Eagles trailing by eight points. Nobody saw fear in his eyes. It didn’t exist.
As much as Eastside’s defense was focused on Jalen, Dakota and Luke — they obviously didn’t see Colin at all — but some of us did. I saw the look in his eyes: determination.
It’s players like Mullins who are going to make defensive strategies difficult for teams playing against ’Busco.
Who will coach Chris Paul surprise us with at the next game? Will Eli Foote make a big debut on the heels of his big brother? Will the inside games of Brayton Bonar and Dean Stanley make an explosive appearance? Maybe Carlin Amber will dash along the baseline for some perfect backdoor plays.
Saturday night, the Eagles showed the world that they’re more than the Jalen Paul and Dakota Barkley show, and now, I don’t think there’s a team in Class 2A that won’t take them seriously.
Keep this season alive for one more week, boys. I’m not ready for this to end.