In time, Kusiak and Co. able to close out Wauconda
No, Grant’s Ben Kusiak did not lead Wauconda in the fourth quarter of Tuesday night’s Northern Lake County Conference game.But it was close: Wauconda 15, Kusiak 13.Grant junior guard Jacob Lotz was good in the fourth too, as he finished with all of his 10 points in the final quarter.A close game for through three, visiting Grant (7-8, 4-1) won the fourth quarter convincingly and pulled away for a 76-56 win.Grant improved to 7-8 and 4-1 in the NLCC, while snapping the three-game winning streak of Wauconda (6-11, 2-4).Kusiak finished with a career-high 28 points.“I think I can play a lot of positions on this team,” Kusiak said. “I just drive and shoot the ball. I needed to take control of this game. I guess I just had a good day.”Grant coach Wayne Bosworth agreed with Kusiak’s description of the game.“Ben is a slasher,” Bosworth said. “He was getting his layups in.”Also contributing to Grant’s winning effort was John Kerr, who posted another double-double. He scored 18 points and grabbed 12 rebounds.“We didn’t seem to have that much intensity in the first half,” Kerr said. “But in the second half, we picked it up. This is a big win for us.”Bosworth, too, wasn’t all that pleased with his team’s work in the opening half. He also gave credit to Wauconda.“We really struggled in the first half,” he said. “We gave up eight turnovers and they turned them into transition baskets. Wauconda always gives us a good game. They got us here last year.”Grant led early but on a flip shot from Wauconda’s Kyle Drobnik, the visitors grabbed a 9-8 lead. Both teams hit 3-pointers in the final minute of the opening quarter. Jason Carlson and Kusiak both had their lone treys before the second quarter began.The second quarter was highlighted by Mike Huff’s 3-point shooting. He had 8 of his 13 points in the quarter. He finished with three 3-pointers. Wauconda’s Jarod Stonis opened the second quarter with a 3-pointer. He led his Bulldogs with 21 points.It was still was a two-point game halfway through the third quarter. Drobnik (12 points, 8 rebounds) had a personal 6-point run in the third and Wauconda trailed just 41-39. From that point on, however, Grant outscored Wauconda 35-17.“We were able to fight through the adversity tonight,” Bosworth said.Kusiak spent most of his time in the fourth quarter at the foul line. He dropped in 11 free throws.