First came the Ben Wolf wave, then the Tyler O'Brien wave.
Sophomore Cameron Dougherty waved throughout the game.
Regardless of the situation, Naperville Central's boys basketball team always had someone to turn to during Friday's 61-53 DuPage Valley Conference victory over visiting Wheaton North.
The Redhawks trio combined for 52 points, with Wolf scoring a game-high 18 and O'Brien and Dougherty pitching in 17 each. With a post, a win and a point all having their moments, it was tough for Wheaton North to stop.
"Our offense really flows when we get everyone involved," said Wolf, a 6-foot-8 senior committed to Northern Michigan. "Once we get one person going, the other team starts guarding them a little bit more heavy, and that lets other people have an opportunity to score."
Wolf scored 8 points in the first quarter as Naperville Central (14-5, 5-2) built an early 17-8 lead. Wolf left with his second foul early in the second quarter, about the same time the Falcons (9-8, 4-3) reclaimed an 18-17 lead.
That's when O'Brien exploded for 11 of his points including three 3-pointers to thwart a bigger Wheaton North run. Dougherty knocked down a 3-pointer to give the Redhawks a 42-34 lead midway through the third quarter, but the Falcons stormed back again to tie the game at 44 on Matthew Brend's bucket at the start of the fourth quarter.
Josh Sorenson scored to keep the Falcons within 53-50 with 3:38 left, but Naperville Central answered with the next 8 points -- including 6-of-6 free-throw shooting -- to put away the game.
"We didn't execute very well and didn't have a good enough effort at times during the game," said Wheaton North coach Dave Brackmann. "Against a good team like that, you can't be inconsistent. We've been inconsistent the whole year. It happened again tonight."
Dillon Kane added 8 points for Naperville Central. The Falcons also were balanced, with Brayden Anthony, Sorenson and Brend scoring 10 points each. Deng Reng scored 9 and Jacob Schauer 8 points.
"We really found guys instead of forcing shots, and I thought that was huge," said Redhawks coach Pete Kramer. "The kids really responded defensively, and offensively we played extremely well."
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