Jason Gregoire scored when it counted the most.
Tallying 12 of his game-high 24 points in the fourth quarter, Gregoire's efforts propelled Cary-Grove to a 52-47 boys basketball win over Hampshire in Fox Valley Conference crossover action in Cary Tuesday night.
Gregoire connected on 2 key 3-pointers and 4-of-4 from the free throw line as the Trojans outscored the pesky Whip-Purs 20-12 during the final 8 minutes.
"I give my teammates all the credit," said Gregoire. "They do a great job of drawing defenders and getting me the ball in good position to score. "
Gregoire also grabbed 8 rebounds with 3 assists and 2 blocked shots for the Trojans (3-3).
"Jason is our best player and he is certainly one of the players we want with the ball in the fourth quarter," said Cary-Grove coach Ralph Schuetzle. "Jason hit some big 3s that gave us a little cushion. "
Cary-Grove, which made 14-of-15 from the free throw line for 93 percent, connected on 10-of-10 from the charity stripe during the final 8 minutes.
Along with Gregoire's 4 free throws, Tyler Szydlo was 4-of-4 while Devin McDonough made both his attempts and scored 12 points including 2 3-pointers.
While the Trojans thrived at the line, the Whip-Purs (2-5) struggled, connecting on only 11-of-23 for 47 percent.
"We have to do better at the free-throw line," said Hampshire coach Bob Barnett. 'That really hurt us tonight. We played hard and the effort was outstanding."
Spearheaded by 3-pointers from McDonough and Mike Krich, the Trojans jumped to a 20-8 lead with 5:55 left in the second quarter.
But the young Whip-Purs refused to quit.
Led by 3s from Ryan Cork and Trey Schramm and 4 points from Matthew Bridges Hampshire went on a 12-0 run to tie the score at 20 with 1:33 left in the first half.
The Whip-Purs seized the lead at half 26-25 on a putback by Brennen Woods with 1:22 left in the half.
Down 35-34 early in the fourth quarter, Cary-Grove regained momentum in the game on a pair of 3s from Gregoire to turn a 1-point deficit into a 5-point lead, 40-35, with 4:49 remaining in the contest.
Hampshire got to within 3 of the Trojans, 48-45, on a 3 by Austin Spaeth with 33 seconds left. The Whip-Purs couldn't get any closer.
Spaeth led Hampshire with 12 points while Bridges scored 11. High-scoring senior guard Cork, who was saddled with foul trouble, scored only 7.