2017-'18 Season Coverage
updated: 12/28/2016 10:15 PM

Bibbs reaches milestone in West Chicago win

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  • Video: Tai Bibbs hits milestone


West Chicago guard Tai Bibbs is the newest member of a select club.

Catching teammate Jason Gimre's baseball pass near midcourt, Bibbs' drive for a two-handed dunk with a little over five minutes left against Hampshire entered the Drake recruit into the Wildcats' 1,000-point club.

A 6-foot-3 senior, Bibbs finished with a 10-foot floater and a hang-time tomahawk slam that had players who were awaiting the next game at DeKalb's 89th Chuck Dayton Holiday Classic hooting in the stands.

Needing 29 points to join graduates such as Indiana-Purdue-Fort Wayne's John Konchar, his older brother Mikey Bibbs and Wildcats coach Bill Recchia among West Chicago 1,000-point scorers, No. 33 scored a season-high 33 points in West Chicago's 58-38 win over the Whip-Purs on Wednesday.

"I had no idea. I was just trying to win the game," said Bibbs, who translated three steals into three dunks among 13-of-21 field-goal shooting including three 3-point baskets, plus a key 4 of 4 from the foul line.

"It's been a long ride for me, I guess," he said. "My sophomore year was kind of a lot of learning, a lot of mistakes that I had to learn from," Bibbs said. "I just tried to get better over the years. I mean, it's a big accomplishment, and following in my brother's footsteps as well, that's kind of cool to have a brother that did the same thing."

Hampshire coach Ben Whitehouse cited Bibbs' 3-pointer from the left wing late in the third quarter, and his three free throws early in the fourth after being fouled on another long try as main daggers against the Whips (2-8).

"For three quarters we definitely felt like we were the aggressors in the game and we were attacking the paint and doing things nice defensively," Whitehouse said.

West Chicago (9-3) held a tenuous 33-28 lead at halftime, but Bibbs and Devonte Pascal -- who joined Gimre with 8 points -- keyed a 14-4 run that had the Wildcats up 53-34 at the time of Bibbs' landmark dunk.

"I think it was more mental than anything. We just couldn't get our heads back in the game after that," said Hampshire center Nathan Gomez, who like Nathan Cork scored 8 points and led a 32-27 rebounding edge over West Chicago. Frederick Powell led Hampshire with 13 points, 7 rebounds.

It was a great 52nd birthday present for Recchia, the 1983 West Chicago graduate who held the program scoring record until Konchar broke it in 2014. Recchia got the second-half "want-to" he sought from his boys and had the pleasure of telling Bibbs he'd eclipsed 1,000 points.

"I told Tai I'd show him the secret handshake later," Recchia joked.

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