A couple of well-timed Coffey jolts invigorated the Batavia boys basketball team in a 69-46 victory over host Streamwood in the Upstate Eight River Friday.
The hot-shooting Bulldogs already led 15-8 when coach Jim Nazos took a full timeout with 17 seconds left in the first quarter to choreograph a set play. The result was sophomore guard Canaan Coffey coming off multiple screens in the lane for an open 3-point attempt at the top of the arc, which rattled in. It was his third 3-pointer of the quarter.
Batavia (6-9, 1-4) led by 19 with 9 seconds left in the second quarter when Nazos again called timeout to draw up a play. This time, Canaan passed the ball to his older brother, Micah Coffey, who was open along the left side of the arc. The senior buried his opportunity with 3 seconds left to stake Batavia to a 39-17 halftime lead.
"We just wanted to get looks," Nazos said. "The makes help, but it's about the ability to get the look. I was real pleased with that."
The Bulldogs made 12 of their 22 shots from 3-point range: 4 from Canaan Coffey, 2 by Micah Coffey, 2 by junior Danny Pieczynski (11 points), 2 by senior Alex Bala and 1 apiece from juniors Chasen Peez and Tyler Lovestrand. Batavia's 12 3-pointers fell 1 shy of its season high of 13 in a loss to Larkin.
Canaan Coffey said he felt unencumbered for the first time this season.
"In the fall I dislocated my shoulder (playing football) and had to wear a brace," said the 6-foot-1 sophomore guard, who connected on 4 of 6 attempts from 3-point range. "This is my first game without it. I practiced this week without it and it felt really good. I finally got my shot back."
Canaan Coffey said it helped that Streamwood's man-to-man defense was allowing Batavia shooters to "fade" to 3-point range and that Streamwood defenders were content to go under ball screens rather than fight over them. Streamwood's coach pointed to an additional reason for allowing so many open looks.
"We were working hard, but it's our foot speed," first-year coach Paul Kowalyszyn said. "We're just too slow getting out on the close outs. We're in the right spots, but about two steps too slow.
"But even when we were doing things right, they were knocking them down. The ball is in one spot and we're not helping. We don't have a lot of experience and our basketball IQ is not where it needs to be right now. But I can't fault the effort."
Batavia held Streamwood (1-12, 0-5) to 4 first-half field goals on 4-of-15 shooting, won the rebounding battle 30-25 and committed only 6 turnovers through three quarters. The Bulldogs led by as much as 32 points in the third quarter.
"I thought defensively we were pretty good about being in the right spots," Nazos said. "We pressured the ball well. Being able to ball pressure and make them uncomfortable helped out a lot. We got looks every single time down the floor. Getting the looks and being able to secure the rebound and being in the right spots helped us stretch it a little bit there."
Streamwood senior forward Antonio Harris scored 10 of his game-high 18 points in the fourth quarter. Sophomore Jacob McGlone scored 10 points for the Sabres.