Indian Creek’s girls and boys basketball teams have made a habit of experiencing early season success.
In games played through Dec. 17, Braves teams own a combined winning record 12 of the past 16 years with a win percentage of .600 or better on 10 occasions.
This season is no different.
Coach Derek Perry’s boys squad takes a 5-0 record into tonight’s much-anticipated home game against Martinsville (5-0), an opponent Indian Creek hasn’t defeated since a 43-42 decision during the 2006-07 season.
Meanwhile, the Braves girls, off to another fast start at 9-3, are likely to be at the top of their game vocally for their male counterparts.
“The girls players are always at our home games, and the boys were at their game Tuesday night against Whiteland. The kids all know each other and support each other, which is the way Indian Creek has always been. It’s a great community,” said Perry, a 1997 Indian Creek graduate.
Senior forward Gynson Robley said he thinks the programs do complement one another well.
“We always try to make it to the girls games, especially if it’s a home game. The senior class is really close, and I feel we have good school spirit,” he said. “The cheer block for our games is usually good.”
As lay coaches, neither Perry nor Braves girls coach Dan Burkman are at Indian Creek during the day, making it that much more difficult to get to know each other.
Burkman since being hired in 2009 is 106-43 with two sectional titles; Perry became head coach of the boys team at his alma mater the following season and owns a 65-48 record.
“I don’t know if the programs feed off each other’s success, but over the past two or three years Derek and I have gotten to know each other better. We sometimes use each other as a sounding board to get the other’s opinion on something,” Burkman said.
Martinsville boys teams have prevailed at Indian Creek seven straight times with the Braves last defending their home floor, 79-69, early in the 1999-2000 season.
“It’s a streak I would like to end, no doubt. Martinsville is playing well, and I feel like we’ve played well in all five of our games,” said Perry, whose squad three years ago also started 5-0 before suffering a 66-54 loss at Martinsville.
“It will be a fun game.”
Junior guard Tim Abel averages 17.2 points to lead a balanced Braves attack offensively. The 6-foot-4 Robley is next at 16.6 points and a team-high seven rebounds per outing, while 6-foot-3 junior forward Bryce Hogue goes 15 and 5.
Jared DeHart, Indian Creek’s starting point guard, sets everything up as indicated by his 7.3 assists per game. Senior guard Tyler Parks averages five points a game.
The boys team following tonight’s game is idle until Dec. 29 and 30 when it returns to Monrovia High School in an attempt to defend the Bulldog Holiday Classic title Indian Creek won last season.
Burkman’s squad is off until Tuesday when it travels to play county rival Greenwood.
On Jan. 2 the Braves participate in the annual Franklin Tournament, a four-team event in which Indian Creek plays Brownsburg — now coached by former Greenwood coach Debbie Guckenberger — in the second semifinal.
“I think the schedule has a lot to do with our record, but our next several games are tough,” Burkman said.
Top combined win percentages posted by Indian Creek basketball teams since the 2000-2001 season (games played by Dec. 17):
Season Boys Girls Total
2002-2003 2-2 8-0 10-2 (.833)
2015-2016 5-0 9-3 14-3 (.824)
2012-2013 5-1 8-2 13-3 (.813)
2014-2015 4-1 7-2 11-3 (.786)
2011-2012 4-1 8-3 12-4 (.750)
2009-2010 1-3 8-1 9-4 (.692)
2008-2009 2-2 7-2 9-4 (.692)
2001-2002 2-4 9-1 11-5 (.688)