2017-'18 Season Coverage
updated: 11/26/2016 7:45 PM

West Chicago goes deep to defeat Elgin

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  • Elgin's Latrell Hudson and West Chicago's Jason Gimre chase down a loose ball Saturday in West Chicago.

      Elgin's Latrell Hudson and West Chicago's Jason Gimre chase down a loose ball Saturday in West Chicago.
    John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Elgin's Trevon Morris commits a charge against West Chicago's Luke Seeman Saturday in West Chicago.

      Elgin's Trevon Morris commits a charge against West Chicago's Luke Seeman Saturday in West Chicago.
    John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • West Chicago's Alen Mahmic tries to block a shot by Elgin's Timothy Wolf Saturday in West Chicago.

      West Chicago's Alen Mahmic tries to block a shot by Elgin's Timothy Wolf Saturday in West Chicago.
    John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • West Chicago's Tai Bibbs keeps the ball away from Elgin's Courtese Cooper Saturday in West Chicago.

      West Chicago's Tai Bibbs keeps the ball away from Elgin's Courtese Cooper Saturday in West Chicago.
    John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Elgin's Titus Ahrens passes the ball to a teammate as West Chicago's Devonte Pascal defends him Saturday in West Chicago.

      Elgin's Titus Ahrens passes the ball to a teammate as West Chicago's Devonte Pascal defends him Saturday in West Chicago.
    John Starks | Staff Photographer

 
By Scott Schmid
Daily Herald Correspondent

With 6-foot-8 Courtese Cooper in the middle, Elgin had held its opponents to an average of 33 points through the first four boys basketball games of the West Chicago Turkey Classic.

But on Saturday the host Wildcats found a quick way to counteract that.

Knocking down eight 3-pointers in the opening quarter, West Chicago cruised to a 61-29 victory in the event finale.

West Chicago, Elgin and Schurz all finished with records of 4-1 at the round-robin tourney, but the Wildcats were awarded the championship due to least points allowed.

"We shot really well," West Chicago coach Bill Recchia said. "When you shoot that well and put somebody on their heels like that, you know good things are happening. Our ability to find the open man was key for us."

All of West Chicago's field goals in the opening eight minutes were 3-pointers -- Jason Gimre hit 3, Tai Bibbs and Luke Seeman had 2 apiece and Alen Mahmic had the other.

"The first seven loose balls, they got to all of them," said Elgin coach Mike Sitter, whose team was down 24-9 after the first quarter. "They kicked them out and hit five 3s, that's 15 points right there. We didn't come out with a lot of energy and that got us in a hole. We hadn't been in a hole all year."

The home team's zone defense helped the Wildcats build the lead. The Wildcats held Elgin to 5 field goals in the middle quarters.

"Tonight was the best job they've done communicating with each other," Recchia said. "Playing the type of defense, you have to communicate with each other."

Bibbs scored 7 points in the second quarter, flushing down an alley-oop jam, and added 14 after halftime to finish with a game-high 26.

"We lost yesterday (to Schurz) and that made a lot of people mad," Bibbs said. "We knew we had to come out hard from the beginning. We were able to hit the ground running and come out really strong.

"Jason and Luke, when they are hitting, that really helps out a lot. If other teams key on me, they will hit those 3s in the corner and that opens everything up. That helped us get a big win tonight."

Gimre and Seeman each scored 14 points.

Cooper and Latrell Hudson topped the Maroons with 6 points apiece.

"We played a lot of players (in this tournament)," Sitter said. "We went with a 10-man rotation. We are still figuring things out, I've never really had a rotation of more than seven."

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