Posted On: 01/10/18 4:39 PM
Final Score: Homestead 52 – FW Blackhawk Christian 55
This matchup featured two of the top performing teams in the Fort Wayne area this season. Homestead has had an up and down season to date. They are on a streak of loss-win-loss-win-loss-win-loss-win-loss-win-loss to post a 5-6 record. Without the stellar play of senior guard Onye Ezeakudo, the Spartans would have dropped a few of their close games this year. Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian has just slid into the number one spot for the Class 1A poll in Indiana. They are sitting at 11-1, posting 10 straight wins after losing to Fort Wayne North Side in the second game of the season.
Last night, Jalan Mull, Caleb Furst, and Onye Ezeakudo put together stellar performances. At the end of the first quarter, the Braves lead the Spartans 16-13 behind five assists from starting point guard Jalan Mull. The second quarter was much of the same for Blackhawk as Furst and Thompson took over down low and paced them to a 36-27 lead at the break.
The start of the third quarter was a little different, Ezeakudo and Buck put together a quick seven-point run to bring the game back within a single possession. Homestead put stellar defender Jake Archbold on Jalan Mull in a box-and-one defensive scheme that slowed the Brave offense down in the third. Homestead was back within a basket heading into the fourth quarter, 47-45. The final period was a defensive battle. With two minutes left to play, there had only been a total of nine points scored in the fourth. It became a point guard battle between Ezeakudo and Mull late into the game. Blackhawk was able to make a few winning plays down the stretch to squeak out the win, 55-52.
Onye Ezeakudo – 6’1” | G | 2018: Onye Ezeakudo was the high point man last night posting 28 points (1-5 2FG, 6-7 3FG, and 8-8 FT), 2 defensive rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals. He was electric from the get go even with Jalan Mull hounding him all night. Nothing came easy but it was nice to see him work for his offense and make some tough shots under duress. He has proven that he can play with the best in the city this season and last night was no let down. He’s a diamond-in-the-rough and programs all around should start taking the time to invest in his development.
Sam Buck – 6’5” | W | 2018 (Saint Xavier University Commit): Sam Buck committed to Saint Xavier University (IL) earlier this week. The senior wing can score the ball at all three levels and is looking more comfortable handling the ball out on the perimeter than in years past. Buck finished with 10 points (2-5 2FG, 2-6 3FG, and 0-1 FT), 2 defensive rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, and 1 blocked shot. He didn’t get into the flow of the game until the second half but was a big reason that the Spartans were able to make a push at the growing Blackhawk lead.
Jake Archbold – 6’1” | G | 2020: Jake Archbold made a splash last season in the Fort Wayne area with his defense but has really worked and improved his offensive game. Last year, teams would dare him to shoot the ball but Homestead needed him on the floor with his athleticism and strength on defense. Archbold finished with 6 points (0-1 2FG and 2-6 3FG) and 3 defensive rebounds. He was tasked with guarding Jalan Mull for the game and still managed to keep himself involved on the offensive end of the floor. Good sophomore prospect with an increasing ceiling on his potential – will be interesting to watch his development over the coming seasons.
Luke Goode – 6’4” | G/W | 2021: Luke Goode was one of two freshman players that found their way into the starting lineup last night and he proved why. Goode can stretch the floor with the best of them in the freshman class and has proven his ability to pitch in on the backboards as well. Luke had a shot late in the game that hit all parts of the rim but didn’t go down that would have put Homestead up by one with three second remaining. Goode finished with 6 points (0-1 2FG and 2-4 3FG) and 4 rebounds (3 defensive and 1 offensive) and will be a prospect to keep an eye on.
Jalan Mull – 6’0” | PG | 2018 (University of Saint Francis Commit): Jalan Mull committed to NAIA Powerhouse the University of Saint Francis in the fall of 2017 and they’ve got an outstanding point guard headed their way. Mull was in complete control of his game last night and he picked apart the Homestead defense. His vision is uncanny for a player his size and he’s consistently improving his jump shooting ability. Mull finished with a double-double performance posting 10 points (2-4 2FG, 1-3 3FG, and 3-4 FT), 5 defensive rebounds, a game high 12 assists, and 2 steals. Jalan is one of the top point guard prospects that the state has to offer and will have a great career with the Cougars.
Drake Thompson – 6’9” | F/C | 2018: Drake Thompson was honored before last night’s contest with a plaque stating that he is now the All-Time Block Leader in Blackhawk Christian history. Early in the first quarter, Drake proved why he sat atop the leaderboards as he erased two shots. Thompson looked good moving around the basket last night and finished with a strong performance with limited minutes. Drake had 9 points (3-8 2FG and 3-4 FT), 7 rebounds (5 offensive and 2 defensive), and 2 blocks. Drake is still uncommitted but has been receiving interest at the NAIA and DIII levels.
Frankie Davidson – 6’5” | W | 2019: Frankie Davidson has sneaky athleticism and finished off two easy baskets last night above the rim. His composure was something of note as he didn’t let mistakes or missed shots affect his game. He continued to work to get open shots and showed his all-around game, scoring from deep and getting to the basket. Davidson finished with 13 points (2-4 2FG and 3-8 3FG) and 5 rebounds (4 defensive and 1 offensive). Frankie struggled to get into a groove offensively but is a valuable weapon for this team moving forward. He will be crucial if they look to make a deep postseason run.
Caleb Furst – 6’9” | W/F | 2021: Caleb Furst was the other freshman who is making a major impact for their team in his first year of varsity basketball. Furst is not only highly ranked in the state of Indiana, but also the country. At 6’9”, he is quick, smart, athletic, and versatile on offense. Caleb finished with a team high 14 points (6-8 2FG and 2-3 FT), 7 rebounds (4 defensive and 3 offensive), and 2 steals. He uses his length extremely well guarding on the perimeter and is superb with the ball in his hands away from the basket on offense. Furst is getting looks from high major DI programs and that will begin turning into offers here soon.