Schaumburg has a defensive day to remember
After his team's loss to Oak Park on Saturday, new Schaumburg coach Marty Manning said that he would prefer his team to stay away from Saturday games in the future.
"We just didn't have much energy Saturday," Manning said before his team tipped off against Prospect on Tuesday night.
"It's tough playing back-to-back nights. I never liked it when I played. We will get to a Tuesday-Friday schedule next season because that's what you play in the state playoffs and I want our kids ready for that."
Schaumburg seemed plenty ready Tuesday. They forced turnovers at the beginning and down the stretch to post a 47-40 victory over the Knights.
"This was a real good win for us," said Manning, whose team has won 5 of its last 6 games to improve to 6-3 on the season. "The guys have really bought into more of a team defensive concepts. We have played some great defense."
Schaumburg showed that defensive side, which was sparked by some early game energy. The Saxons were all over the court, forcing 8 Prospect turnovers to lead 12-9. The Knights were able to stay close thanks to some good shooting, converting 4 of the 5 shots they took.
"I really felt the energy when I got on the court," said Brendan Parker, who had 10 points and 5 rebounds. "You could just feel it. And our crowd felt it, to0, and that helped a lot."
Schuamburg led 28-22 late in the third quarter when Prospect (4-4) caught fire thanks to the play of Matt Szuba.
The 6-foot-4 sophomore hit a 3, then converted a missed shot to put the Knights up for the first time. He forced a turnover and followed later with a sweet pass to an open Peter Fusilero, who was fouled and consequently hit a pair of free throws to give Prospect a 32-29 lead with 40.5 seconds left in the third quarter.
Jason Schoo (9 points), who kept Schaumburg in the game in the third quarter, hit his third triple of the period as the game went into the final period tied at 32.
Schaumburg then turned up the defensive pressure to pull away. The Saxons forced 6 turnovers on Prospects's first 6 possessions of the final quarter.
Charlie Quilico hit a short jumper and a layup off a steal while Kameron Powell had an easy inside basket as Schaumburg went on a 6-0 run to take the lead for good with 4:39 to play.
"Defense is a big point of emphasis for us," said Quilico, who led all scorers with 14 points. "We really work on it in practice. We know it can help get our offense going."
Prospect closed to 38-35 on Fusilero's 3 with 4:15 to play. But with Quilico leading the way, hitting all 6 of his free throws, Schaumburg knocked down 9 of 10 from the penalty stripe to get the win.
Kyle Beyak led Prospect with 10 points while Fusilero had 8 points and Kyle Formanski and Grant Miller each chipped in 6 points.
"It is disappointing," Prospect coach John Camardella said. "There is no mincing words, it is disappointing. You have to give credit to Schaumburg's defense for disrupting some of our early action."