IHCC practiced on Wednesday, its second off day of the national tournament, in preparation for Thursday afternoon’s national quarterfinal clash with fifth-ranked South Plains. The 2011 national champs looked impressive in earning their second win in as many days with a 75-65 triumph over Texas rival Paris on Tuesday just a couple hours after the Warriors survived New Mexico in double overtime 102-94.
Besides needing to prepare to be at their best for a quality opponent, IHCC players and coaches needed Wednesday to regroup after a physically and emotionally draining win in its tournament opener.
“There was a little bit of a downside to how we felt when we woke up (Wednesday) morning,” Peery said. “We’re going to bounce through it. Rod was certainly a big piece to our team, but as we told the guys it’s Indian Hills that’s playing, so we got to go and play for Indian Hills.”
It is without question that without Bobbitt, IHCC would not be preparing for a national quarterfinal contest on Wednesday. Even without playing in either overtime period, Bobbitt led the Warriors with 26 points against New Mexico Junior College and had three-straight 3-pointers to begin a second half charge after the Thunderbirds opened up a 16-point second half lead.
Besides his play on Tuesday, Bobbitt’s play throughout his sophomore season is a main reason why the Warriors are even a part of the 24-team national tournament field.
“It’s always tough losing a brother like Rod,” sophomore Marcus Posley said. “He’s a leader. He’s the captain of our team. He’s one of the most experienced guys we have. He’s been a part of this tournament before. We relied on Rod for a lot of things.”
Nobody will miss Bobbitt more than Peery, who has coached the California native on a pair of national tournament teams. Tuesday was truly a day of mixed emotions for the third year head coach of the Warriors.