Amanze Egekeze is, arguably, the best player in the Fox Valley Conference. But the Huntley Red Raiders' machine flies on more than one engine.
Egekeze, who scored only 4 points in the first half, tallied 14 in the second half but Huntley's talented big man got plenty of help.
Zach Gorney scored 16 points and Kyle Slonka canned 3 3-pointers as Huntley outmuscled Dundee-Crown 59-40 in FVC Valley Division action at Huntley Friday night.
"We know teams are going to double-team Amanze so other players have to step up," said Huntley coach Marty Manning. "Against Barrington we had kids pass up open shots. Tonight we had kids step up. Zach was very aggressive to start the game and Kyle hit some big 3s to loosen things up in the middle."
It was the play of Gorney and Slonka that propelled the Raiders to a quick start.
With Gorney scoring 7 points and Slonka connecting on a pair of treys, Huntley (17-4, 7-0) led 16-9 after one quarter.
The Red Raiders stayed hot in the second quarter and seized control after a 3 by Slonka gave the hosts a 26-12 lead with 4 minutes left before intermission.
But the feisty Chargers refused to cave in. With Zach Prochop and Kiwaun Seals connecting on shots from beyond the arc along with a putback by Connor Steinmetz the Chargers got to within 6, 26-20, with 1:22 left before half.
D-C didn't get any closer.
Leading 30-20 at halftime, Huntley ensured there wouldn't be a D-C comeback with a run early in the third quarter. Egekeze scored 6 points as the Raiders started the second half on a 9-3 run to take a 16-point, 39-23 advantage with 5:11 left in the quarter.
'We looked at halftime and saw Amanze had only one shot," said Manning."That is unacceptable. We did a better job of getting him the ball in the second half."
Huntley's biggest lead of the game was 22, 55-33, after a putback by Gorney with 2:22 remaining.
"I knew D-C would double-team Amanze," said Gorney, "I knew I had to be aggressive and take open shots."
Seals was the lone Charger in double figures with 18 points.
"Huntley is so tough to defend and they played very well tonight," said D-C coach Lance Huber, "We played hard and got to within 6
in the second quarter, but we couldn't get any closer."