Deerfield hangs on against Warren
All season long, Warren’s boys basketball team was in games until the end.That was the scenario again Wednesday night, as the Blue Devils tried to rally from a 9-point deficit in the final quarter. But No. 6 Deerfield held on for a 34-30 in the Class 4A Notre Dame regional semifinal in Niles.Deerfield (18-11) will take on No. 4 Notre Dame (25-4) for the regional championship at 7 p.m. Friday.Jake Falish led No. 12 Warren (15-15) with 12 points, dropping in four 3-pointers. Maurice Chambers added 8 points.“I love this team and they competed so hard to win,” Warren coach Ryan Webber said. “We worked our butts off and just fell short.”The Blue Devils trailed 33-24 with 5:40 remaining in the game. Chambers and Falish each hit a 3 to cut the Deerfield lead to 33-30 at the three-minute mark. Warren had an great shot to tie the game with a minute left but saw a three-point attempt go in and out of the basket.“I don’t know how that ball didn’t go in,” Webber said. “It found a way to come out. That’s the way it goes sometimes.”Joey Lane made a free throw with 11 seconds left to seal the game for Deerfield. Nick Zwart led the Warriors with 10 points and 10 rebounds.Vernon Hills 91, CICS/Northtown 30: At Ridgewood, Bo Manso scored 17 points and Lem Turner added a season-high 16, as the top-seeded Cougars cruised in their Class 3A regional opener.Vernon Hills (26-4) also received 13 points from Robby Nardini, 11 from Matt Weaver and 9 from Jacob Helfand. Manso, Nardini and Helfand each sank three 3-pointers.The Cougars will play No. 9 Antioch in Friday’s 7 p.m. regional final.Antioch 60, Ridgewood 55: At Ridgewood, Kyle Gofron scored 12 points, as the ninth-seeded Sequoits ousted the host/No. 8 seed.Antioch received 10 points apiece from Danny Brito and Matt Powers.The Sequoits will play No. 1 Vernon Hills for the regional title at 7 p.m. Friday.Palatine 74, Grayslake Central 60: At Cary-Grove, the 14th-seeded Rams dropped their Class 4A regional semifinal.Grayslake Central finishes its season at 14-14.Hersey 66, Cary-Grove 57: Hersey sophomore guard Joe Coffaro looks like an eighth grader toiling in a grammar school tournament.Coffaro doesn’t play like a grade-schooler.Connecting on six 3-pointers, the sophomore scored a game-high 26 points to propel the sixth-seeded Huskies to a 66-57 win over 11th-seeded Cary-Grove in semifinal action of the Class 4A Cary-Grove regional Wednesday night.Hersey will play Palatine for the regional title Friday at 7 p.m. The Pirates advanced with a 74-60 win over Grayslake Central.“He (Coffaro) was certainly the difference in the game,” said Cary-Grove coach Ralph Schuetzle. “We have seen him seven or eight times this season, and he probably averaged one or two 3s in those games.”Coffaro, who was 6 of 9 from beyond the arc, also made 6 of 8 from the free throw line.“Joe has been a consistent player for us all season,” said Hersey coach Steve Messer. “They were clogging up the lane so we did a good job inside-out, and our shooters had open looks. Joe was outstanding.”Coffaro gave his teammates credit.“They got me the ball in good position to shoot,” said Coffaro. “I shot with a lot of confidence tonight.”The Huskies (18-9) were able to finally get some breathing space from the pesky Trojans (16-12) in the fourth quarter.Holding a slim 43-41 lead after 3 quarters, Hersey started the fourth quarter on a 6-0 run.Zak Cooper, Max Heeren and Josh Mailloux each had baskets as Hersey led 49-41 with 6:18 left.The Trojans refused to quit and got to within 54-51 on a 15-footer by Jason Gregoire with 3:09 remaining.The Trojans couldn’t get any closer.