Riley looks to win NIC outright Friday against St. Joe


The Riley seniors were less than a year old.

The juniors and sophomore, not even born.

It was the last time the Wildcats boys basketball team win the Northern Indiana Conference championship.

So it made a lot of sense why there was a huge celebration, including a rushing of the court, last Thursday when Riley defeated Washington to clinch at least a share of the conference title.

The Wildcats can win the NIC title outright on Friday by defeating St. Joe.

"We've haven't been here since '91," senior J.T. Breveard said immediately following the game. "That's 17 years. We just did something, nobody has done in a while. It feels good."

So good that it made for a very emotional post-game speech for head coach Mark Johnson in the locker room with his team.

"Whenever you win a game that puts you in a position to win a championship, if you don't make it special, then you are in the wrong sport," Johnson said Wednesday as his team prepared to face the Indians.

"It was very special, not only for me, but for the players as well."

The Wildcats know they are not finished because they still only have a share of the conference title.

"We don't want to share it at all," senior Zac Cook explained. "We want to get it all for ourselves and be the best team."

If Riley loses, St. Joe will also claim a share of the conference title. It will also allow Adams and Washington to be co-champions if they win their respective games on Friday.

"A lot of people look up to you and they just look at say 'wow, that team is special,'" Cook explained. "And that's what we want to leave---we want to leave a legacy to have people remember us for what we accomplished."

The Wildcats can make it all a reality Friday at 7:30 at St. Joseph's High School.

We'll have complete highlights of the big game on Roundball Roundup on Newscenter 16 at 11 on Friday.

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