By Sam Parsons
The Oskaloosa Indians returned to the floor for more Little Hawkeye Conference basketball on Tuesday and fell in both ends of the girls and boys doubleheader to the Grinnell Tigers.
The girls game featured an offensive explosion from Grinnell, who entered the night ranked 13th in class 3A in the latest IGHSAU rankings. The Tigers boasted an aggressive shooting attack, but most of their points came in the paint, in transition, or both. Seniors Leah Harris and Bailey Strovers each put up 22 points for the Tigers as they controlled the pace of the game from start to finish.
Osky’s offense started slow against the Tigers’ full court press, but after being held to 8 points in the first quarter, the Indians were able to find their groove. Senior Presley Blommers had a 24 point night and the Indians were able to see significant contributions from their 3rd and 4th offensive options; where there have been plenty of games this season where Osky’s offense was centralized on Blommers and sophomore Dasia Foster, the Indians saw sophomore Hannah Nelson tally a season-high 12 points and Lydia Van Veldhuizen put up 9 en route to the Indians scoring 55 points as a team; however, it wouldn’t be enough to keep pace with the outburst from the Tigers, as the Indians fell 77-55.
The nightcap of the doubleheader was an entertaining game from start to finish. The boys of Osky and Grinnell entered the night as relatively evenly matched teams and neither team was able to establish a firm grip on the game. At halftime, Grinnell led 25-24, and neither team led by more than 6 points at any point in the game. Grinnell was led by sophomore Derek Doty, who notched 16 points, as well as junior Carson Penyich and sophomore Brady Coffman, who each tallied a dozen. The Indians saw their scoring leader on the season, freshman Max Roach, get into foul trouble early in the 3rd quarter, but junior Aidan Scholes, senior Waylon Bolibaugh, and junior Gus Bunnell picked up the slack by scoring 16, 15, and 12 points, respectively.
The game went down to the wire with Osky trailing 50-48 with under 10 seconds left. The Indians forced a Tiger turnover and Bolibaugh was able to put in the game-tying layup to send the game to OT in the waning seconds with the score at 50-50. In the 4-minute OT period, neither team was able to muster much offense, but Grinnell was able to knock down a couple of layups and a free throw, which proved to be just enough; they led 55-52 in the final seconds when Osky attempted one last 3-pointer, which didn’t go. The Indians fell to the Tigers and remain in search of their first conference win.
Oskaloosa’s girls sit at 5-6 while the boys are now 1-9. Both teams will face Norwalk at home this Friday (1/13). Coverage begins on KBOE at 6pm.