In a pure offense vs. defense clash, which team will prevail? The Olney Tigers have one of the better players in the southern part of Central Illinois, while the Green Wave are one of the better defensive-minded teams. Olney is also undefeated. The Green Wave will have a tough task on the road tonight.
Here is a preview of today’s game.
Team Records: Mattoon (5-2, 1-1) @ Olney (5-0, 1-0)
Where: Olney High School
Tickets: Tickets can be purchased at Olney High School
School Size: Mattoon (930), Olney (736)
JV Tip-Off: 5:00 p.m.
Varsity Tip-Off: 6:30 p.m.
Opponent’s History: Head coach Rob Flanagan entered his 25th season coaching at Olney. All results are posted on IHSA up to the 2016-2017 season, in which he compiled a 341-243 record with five Regional Championships, two Sectional Championships, one state berth, and a third-place finish in 2007-2008.
Olney’s Past Results: Four of the five wins on the season are by 20 points or more. That includes wins over Edwards County, Red Hill, Mt. Carmel, and Robinson. The team’s closest margin of victory was a 50-44 win over Fairfield.
Olney’s Top Players: The team’s best player appears to be 6-foot-5 senior forward Chase Travis, who is averaging 21.4 points and 9.6 rebounds. The team’s next leading scorers are Drew Blank, who is averaging 8.4 points per game, and sophomore Ian Winkley, averaging 7.4 points.
Olney’s Team Stats: The Tigers are efficient on offense, shooting 49% from the field. Travis leads the way with his 64% field-goal percentage. The team also shoots 39% from the 3-point range, but only 68% from the free-throw line. The offense is averaging 64.6 points per game.
Mattoon’s Past Results: Mattoon blew away Effingham 64-24 in their last meeting, which included forcing the Hearts to commit 24 turnovers. Cooper Bergstrom and Jaylen Middleton teamed up for 28 points in the win.
Mattoon’s Team Stats: Mattoon is allowing just 37.7 points per game. With the offensive and defensive mentalities of both teams, this should be an interesting game.
What Olney Said: Coach Flanagan did not comment.
What Mattoon Said: “I have watched a little bit of film on them, and they are a very good team,” said coach Ryan Ghere. “They play solid man defense all over the floor. Their point guard is very good and averages over 20 points per game. We need to establish an inside presence early. We should be bigger than they are. If we play like we did last night, we should be fine.”