Kyle Schroeder had stood his ground all night. The last 18 seconds of this DuPage Valley Conference boys basketball game were no different.
The Waubonsie Valley senior forward stole a Metea Valley pass into the lane, was fouled and made the second of two free throws to cap a game-ending 7-0 run for a 68-66 Warriors victory Tuesday on their home court in Aurora.
"Metea puts up points and they have a lot of shooters, so we really just tried to lock down. I had a chance to help and got the ball," said Schroeder, who scored 10 points with 5 rebounds, two offensive charges taken and the big steal.
"They set up with a guy in the corner and I knew my guy wasn't a shooter so I just sagged off and went for the ball," he said.
Waubonsie Valley (12-14, 6-7) enjoyed a solid team win.
Caymen Woods stuck to his man on Metea's final miss at the buzzer, just inside the 3-point arc on the right wing. Marcus Skeete's 21 points led four Warriors in double figures -- "which I don't think we've ever had since I've been here," said Waubonsie second-year coach Jason Mead.
Coming all the way back from a 50-38 third-quarter deficit, senior guard Eric Cannon's hard drive for a lay-in with 34 seconds left gave Waubonsie its first lead since a Cannon 3 made it 28-27 late in the second quarter.
"He's a really good player," said Metea Valley coach Matt Walpole, "and he went and got a bucket when they needed it most."
Metea Valley (11-11, 6-7) needed a few free throws but went 1 for 8 from the line in the fourth quarter, odd for a team that averages 72.8 percent from the line.
"It came down to playing defense and shooting free throws and we didn't do either well enough to win," Walpole said.
Mead called it a "battle-back win" after the Warriors' 53-50 loss at Metea on Jan. 5 in which they squandered a 7-point lead.
Metea manufactured a 30-30 halftime tie with Holden Rank swishing three 3-pointers in the second quarter. Brad Hartje, Ethan Helwig and Cory Adams paced a 20-8 Metea run out of halftime before Skeete led a Waubonsie burst to pull within 52-47 after three quarters.
Derrien Porter scored 14 points and Cannon 11 for Waubonsie; Hartje scored 21 on 9-of-11 shooting for Metea, followed by Rank with 17, Helwig with 13.
"If we continue to play with this kind of effort we'll be fine," Mead said. "We've got to shore up a lot of defensive things, but I think that kind of effort will take us a long way."