The burgeoning St. Edward boys basketball team needed a half to get its legs loose before outrunning Marian Central for a 64-51 Suburban Christian Gold victory in Woodstock Tuesday.
The balanced Green Wave turned a 3-point halftime lead into a 13-point victory by pressing, running the floor and sharing the basketball. The Wave notched 10 points off Hurricane turnovers in the backcourt and four players scored in double-digits as St. Edward improved to 8-1 overall, 1-1 in the SCC Gold.
Junior guard DeVontae Elam led the Wave with 17 points and 4 steals, 6-foot-3 sophomore Danny Favela finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds, 6-4 sophomore Nick Duffy added 13 points and 3 assists and 6-4 senior Adrian Ponce finished with 10 points and 7 rebounds.
"The last couple of years we had one guy we looked to, but we don't want that," St. Edward coach and athletic director P.J. White said. "We want to have a full team. That's what we're really concentrating on."
"We try not to be selfish and get everyone the ball," Elam said. "We have a lot of offensive players who can get the ball in the hole, some big guys. I just try to get them the ball and do the job to get Ws."
St. Edward did not make a 3-pointer and attempted only three shots from that depth, mainly because the Wave didn't need the long-range shot. Though Marian Central (1-5, 0-2) won the rebounding battle 42-34, the Wave committed 9 fewer turnovers than the Hurricanes (24).
St. Edward used an 8-2 spurt in the third quarter to gain some breathing room, capped by Ponce's putback of his own miss. Marian was still within 39-33 after sophomore Wyatt Lindell (team-high 12 points) drained a 3-pointer, but a 6-0 St. Edward surge ballooned the lead to double digits for the first time. Elam banked in a 14-footer, Duffy used a double move in the post to gain a layup and Ponce was fouled on a breakaway and hit 2 free throws to forge a 45-33 lead with 13.3 seconds left in the third quarter. Marian never drew closer than 11 points in the fourth quarter.
"The first half we were struggling with turnovers and boxing out," Favela said. "The second half we got some intensity from coach and all the players. We started running on them and they couldn't keep up."
The hot start has St. Edward already in range of last year's win total of 11, but the players say they are keeping their success in perspective since it's only December.
"It's a really good start, but you have to still play hard and continue to win," senior point guard Antonio Domel said. "I think we can win 15, 16 games, maybe more."
"We're not coming into games big headed or anything," Ponce said. "We just come to play hard every day,"