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2013-'14 Season Coverage
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Article updated: 12/13/2013 11:28 PM
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Waubonsie puts faith in the screen
 

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Waubonsie puts faith in the screen
 

First a messy offensive set. Then an attempted save of a rebound instead thrown straight to a Batavia player under his basket for a score and the lead.

That's when Waubonsie Valley coach Chaz Taft called time.

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Proving why coaches get hired to do that sort of thing, the Warriors came out of the timeout with a 10-0 run that led to a 57-46 Upstate Eight Conference crossover win against visiting Batavia on Friday in Aurora.

"That's when I said, 'Guys, you've got to settle down. Your basketball IQ's got to take over,' " Taft said.

Junior guard Chris Karkazis took that to mean offensive execution.

"Setting screens is huge for our offense, so we went back to the chalkboard and we forced each other to set good screens and be unselfish. And that's honestly what's brought us back," he said.

Countering a 40-38 Batavia lead, Karkazis hit a 3 from the right corner, scored inside then saw his brother, Nick, draw a charge and drain a 3 from the left side for a 46-40 Waubonsie lead with 3:55 left to play.

A 3 by Batavia's Chasen Peez brought the Bulldogs back within 48-43 with 1:27 to play, but Waubonsie (3-4) got four straight free throws by Chris Karkazis and Jay DeHaan and a DeHaan transition dunk to stretch it out again.

"I think when the parts come together we're going to be a good team," said Batavia coach Jim Nazos. "I like us. We had good practices this week. I think there's going to be a time here when all of a sudden we're rolling."

Despite making 13 of their 21 turnovers in the first half, Batavia (2-4) never let Waubonsie get far away, trailing 24-19 by halftime.

The Bulldogs earned their first lead, 30-28, on a three-point play by Danny Pieczynski, a 3-pointer from Tyler Lovestrand and another Pieczynski 3 midway through the third quarter.

Then it was game on. The second of Peez's two 3-point baskets staked Batavia to a 38-36 lead after three quarters.

A 6-foot-6 junior, Peez said the secret to the rally was simple: play better team ball.

"Just stick to what we know and do best, just run the offense and trust it, buy in completely," he said.

Peez led Batavia with 13 points followed by Pieczynski with 8 and Micah Coffey with 7. Waubonsie Valley landed three in double figures: DeHaan with 18, Chris Karkazis with 14 and brother Nick Karkazis with 12.

"It was definitely one of those games where you've got to have some grit and get through it," Chris Karkazis said.

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