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Article updated: 12/26/2013 11:43 PM
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Batavia falls short in Elgin quarters
 

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Batavia falls short in Elgin quarters
Brandon Mangia

Despite a poor shooting night, Batavia found itself well within striking distance of Wendell Phillips in the fourth quarter on Thursday night during a quarterfinal matchup at the Elgin Holiday Tournament.

However, the Bulldogs could not generate the timely defensive stops they needed and fell 53-46. The loss denies Batavia a Final Four appearance and will instead head to the loser's bracket where it will play Walther Christian.

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"They do a lot of things well and keep you from getting in a rhythm," said Batavia coach Jim Nazos. "We've got to learn and move on."

The Bulldogs (3-8) entered the fourth quarter down 39-34 and cut the lead to 44-41 with 3:26 remaining after a rebound and putback by Chasen Peez.

Phillips was able to kill the momentum after Dion Irvin connected on two free throws after drawing a foul on a drive to the basket. Peez again kept Batavia close with another putback at the 2:20 mark to cut the deficit to 48-43, but another answer by Phillips ultimately put the game out of reach.

"There were a couple loose balls we could have had, but I still think we're a team searching to get on a roll and I don't think we're far from it," Nazos said.

After falling behind 20-12 after one quarter, each team failed to generate any offense in the second as Batavia was outscored 3-2 to head into the break down 23-14.

"After the first quarter, defensively we settled in. The flow of the game was a little tighter," Nazos said. "It goes to show you, you can't spot a team 20 in the first quarter."

After lighting it up from 3-point range on Monday, Batavia went just 5-for-26 from long distance, including 1-for-10 in the fist half.

"We wanted to extend them with a 1-2-2," said Phillips coach Lawrence Briggs. "I told our guys (Batavia) would make those in the second half so we would have to be prepared to box out. They're a great shooting team and teams like that aren't going to miss the whole game."

Peez scored a team-high 16 points, including 12 in the fourth quarter, and added 8 rebounds for Batavia, which shot 17-for-48 (35 percent) from the floor. Micah Coffey added 8 points.

William Robinson led Phillips (6-7) with a game-high 22 points.

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