Cary-Grove outlasts Dundee-Crown
Cary-Grove guard Adam Loch admitted if more free throws had gone down in the fourth quarter of his team's 54-48 win over Dundee-Crown Friday in Cary, the Trojans could've sealed the deal much quicker and won their Fox Valley Conference Valley Division boys basketball matchup by a much wider margin.
But with just 3 wins coming in, on top of the fact the Trojans (4-11, 1-2) had lost 9 of their last 10, let alone the fact they had relinquished an 11-point second quarter lead, it's a win they'll take heading into the thick FVC portion of their schedule.
"This one was huge to stick together as a team," said Loch, who led all scorers with 16 points including three 3-pointers. "It was only our fourth win but a great confidence booster going into conference play."
Danny Clarke added 14 points on three 3s of his own along with 2 offensive rebounds while Daniel Schmidt had 13 points to go with 5 boards.
Cary-Grove missed 6 of its 15 fourth-quarter free throws in key moments but survived thanks to its defense and a 6-0 run to start the fourth, which gave enough cushion to get by a D-C (1-12, 0-2) team who was struggling as well and looked to extend its win streak to 2.
Clarke started the fourth off in good fashion with a 3 following his own offensive rebound. Then off a Schmidt steal on the subsequent possession, Loch took a feed and went strong to the cup for the old-fashioned 3-point play to give the Trojans a 46-38 lead with 7:20 remaining. Those would be the only 2 shots C-G would convert in the fourth and they were big in hindsight as free throws dictated the final minutes.
"We built up a lot of momentum on those two plays," Clarke said after concluding the team lost it in the second quarter when D-C went on a 13-2 run to even things up at the half. "We have to focus more. This season's been rough with the runs in the first and second quarters, we just have to limit those."
Had the Trojans been able to limit D-C's runs, the lead wouldn't have changed 6 times in the third. Jack Orndahl's free throws gave the Chargers a 38-37 lead with 1:18 left but it would be their last as C-G forced 5 fourth quarter turnovers and limited the Chargers to 4 of 11 shooting in the quarter after shooting 53.8 percent in the three prior.
"We just couldn't get the big bucket to fall for us," Chargers coach Lance Huber said. "They jolted us a little early, we got our composure, made that run in the second, we were right there."
Orndahl led D-C with 12 points on three 3-pointers. Gabriel Bergeron added 11 while Matt Weichmann had 10. D-C won the glass 17-14 but committed 20 turnovers in total, as Loch and Schmidt had at least 2 steals each.
"We know we've been getting outrebounded and we knew we had to force some turnovers," Cary-Grove coach Ralph Schuetzle said. "We had take away five points and add five points to our score, and obviously we did that tonight."