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Amauri Moore wants more for Bishop Noll. The Hammond Central transfer is ‘ready to make history.’

Senior forward Amauri Moore has made a smooth transition at Bishop Noll after transferring from Hammond Central, where he won a regional title last season.

But that doesn’t mean the process didn’t take effort, especially for the Warriors to win their second sectional title in three seasons.

“It feels good, especially with the amount of work me and my team put in,” Moore said. “Even myself individually, it took a lot to get here, with me being with the team I was last year and winning sectionals, and coming in with a new program and winning with my friends. Just a lot of work put in, a lot of late practices, just mentally getting myself ready and my team ready and being that leader. A lot of long nights.

“We had to build a lot of chemistry with each other. I knew some of the guys, but it wasn’t all there right away. We spent a lot of time with each other, just little outings just to be with each other. It built chemistry, and now it’s on the court. And now it’s time to flow.”

The 6-foot-6 Moore will try to help Noll (20-7) continue to flow in the Class 3A Triton Regional against Fairfield (19-6) on Saturday. The Warriors last won a regional title in 2015.

Moore, who averages 11.1 points and a team-high 6.4 rebounds, could be a key cog who pushes Noll over the top. He’s one of several players who joined the senior core of Caleb Parks, Jaedin Reyna and Angel Alvarez this season.

“He’s been a breath of fresh air,” Noll coach John Dodson III said of Moore. “He’s a competitor, tough. We had three returning guys with Angel, Jaedin and Caleb coming back. We were just missing that toughness piece. Him coming from Hammond Central — winning culture over there, tough kids there — from day one, he brought that.

“You can see that every single day on the court. Just the leadership he brings is huge. That’s not even including the statistical stuff. He’s been big for us there, and he’s grown every single day he’s been here, every single game, in the classroom, interacting with administrators, and obviously on the court he’s grown as well.”

Moore was voted one of the team’s captains along with Parks and Alvarez. Dodson, who was part of Noll’s 2011 Class 2A state runner-up, wasn’t sure how the balloting would go.

“It’s very rare that a kid comes in his first year and the guys vote him as a captain,” Dodson said. “He’s the youngest senior we have, and he has some of the strongest leadership skills. They voted, and we said, ‘Hey, whether you’ve been here one year, you’re a freshman, a sophomore, it doesn’t matter.’

“They get to see the behind-the-scenes, and whoever the guys believe is the leader, that’s who they voted on. He’s been holding that role ever since.”

Parks said Moore has handled that role adeptly.

“Amauri’s a great leader,” Parks said. “He knows how to get to guys, to get them going. If they’re in a slump, he knows how to get them out of a slump. If I come down and have a turnover, he says, ‘Get it back on defense.’ He just keeps our heads in the right mindset.

“Before the season, I was the only one who really knew him. We grew up together. Other guys kind of knew him, but they didn’t really know how he is. He brings joy to the locker room. He’s a jokester. He really clicked with everybody instantly. He built relationships with everyone.”

But Moore was still a little taken aback to be voted a captain.

“It was a little pressure on my shoulders, but it made me feel like, ‘Dang, I have people who look up to me and want to see me in that position,’” he said. “It made me feel like I had a bigger role and bigger responsibilities. I realized what they see me do, they want to do too. How I act in school, how I conduct myself in the classroom, hallways, court, all of that plays a big factor into how they act. It really just made me want to be that person.

“It’s knowing how to come to people. Some people think being a leader is just yelling at people. But you have to know how to talk to people, how people are. You have to learn people. Yeah, coaches yell, but I always had a player come to me and talk to me. I learned that and use it with all of the other players.”

Indeed, Moore, who also played tight end and defensive end for Hammond Central’s football team as a junior, has drawn on his experiences throughout high school.

He averaged 6.1 points and 3.3 rebounds last season, when Hammond Central lost in a semistate semifinal. He earned a starting spot midway through the season before returning to the bench in the latter stages.

“With that happening, it took a toll on me,” Moore said. “But with us winning, I didn’t have a negative mindset. But it stuck with me. Coming into this season, it made me feel like I’m ‘him,’ I’m that person who’s supposed to bring that fire. It put a big chip on me, and I had to do what I had to do. It resulted in me being a sectional champ.”

Moore also was a sectional champion as a freshman in Hammond High School’s final season. He started on the junior varsity team and dressed for varsity games with that outstanding group that lost in overtime in a regional final. Of course, he has made a deeper contribution to bookend his career.

“He’s realizing he’s a very important part of the team,” Parks said. “Early in the year, he had a couple of games getting into foul trouble, and that hurt us because he’s a big part of our team. He really focused on not getting in foul trouble as much, playing solid defense, rebounding the ball. Stuff like that helps us out.”

A prominent relative helped point Moore toward Noll after two years at Hammond Central, where coach Larry Moore Jr. stepped down to take the job at St. Francis de Sales in Chicago. Gary Patterson, Amauri Moore’s cousin, is Noll’s career scoring leader, was a Junior All-Star in 2003 and an Indiana All-Star in 2004, and played at Butler and IUPUI. Patterson owns a merchandise store in Indianapolis called WDRFA (We Don’t Run From Adversity).

“He’s like my mentor,” Moore said. “He’s a big part of why I think how I think now. So I thank him. I spent time with him this summer, and he really told me there’s a lot you can get out of life by going to Noll. Beyond basketball, just with the academics, you can be successful. I took it as inspiration. I did a lot of work to get admitted. I got accepted, started playing with the guys over the summer, and it just went from there.

“At first, I was a little hesitant coming from a different school, a different program. But the guys made it easier for me to come in and be the piece on the team that I am now. You think about it, a couple of months ago, I’d never think I’d be in this position. I’m so used to having leaders above me. But I took aspects from them, and me being a leader on this team, it made it easier for me to come in and fit in.”

Moore doesn’t want the journey to end anytime soon.

“I’m ready to make history and bring this program to another level,” he said. “I want to be remembered in this school.”