Buffalo Grove's Tom Trieb could have easily qualified for Mr. Consistency in the host Bison's 60-54 over Grayslake Central Monday night. It was both teams' season opener in the Buffalo Grove boys basketball Thanksgiving tournament.
Trieb contributed in some way in each quarter to help keep the feisty Rams at bay.
A 6-foot-3 junior forward, Trieb scored 11 points and grabbed 8 rebounds to go with 3 steals, 2 blocks and 4 assists.
"Tom is just a hard matchup for anyone," said Buffalo Grove coach Keith Peterson. "He is comfortable and strong with the ball. He really has good court vision. He's a fun player to watch."
Grayslake Central (0-1) had trouble getting going, falling behind 10-2 with 4:49 left in the first quarter.
When Buffalo Grove center Mac Camardo picked up his second foul, the Rams were able to work a little better inside. Grayslake Central held the Bison (1-0) scoreless the rest of the quarter to tie the game at 10.
Alec Novak scored 7 of his team-high 12 points in the second quarter to keep the Rams within striking distance.
Buffalo Grove managed a 27-22 halftime lead with Caleb Mayhorn hitting a free throw and Brendan Reid scoring from the wing to finish the first half.
The Rams connected on four 3s in the third quarter to help keep pace with the Bison, who were working the ball inside to Camardo. He had 6 points in the quarter.
"They did a real good job setting screens for their shooters which kept the game close," said Peterson.
With 3:24 left in the game Novak hit a 3 to narrow the Bison lead to 51-49.
Sophomore Natahn Cole hit a 3 pointer for BG which was followed by a basket on a driving layup by Jack Vaselaney (16 points) for a 56-49 lead.
Novak hit 2 free throws before Trieb assisted on a bucket by Camardo (16 points, 6 rebounds) to give the Bison a 58-51 lead.
Jack Spalding (6 rebounds), who was limited to 7 points, hit a 3 before Vaselaney connected on 2 free throws for the final points.
"I'd rather have a game like this where you have to grind it out than a blowout," said Trieb. "It's just a big help in getting us ready for the next game. I think we will play a lot better in our next game than we did tonight. We missed some shots that we could have made. I think I'm getting in better shape after the football season ended. There, you have about 40 seconds to catch your breath. Here it's a constant run.
"I've always like to make fancy plays. I started doing that when I was young.With my height I can look over defenses to make the passes."
Grayslake Central was certainly encouraged by its shooting effort.
"We've been talking that this is one of the better shooting teams we've had," said Grayslake Central coach Kosta Kougias.
Grayslake connected on 11 of 19 three-point shots.
"Shooting like we did it gave us a chance to stay in the game," said Kougias. "With our turnovers (20), we had a lot of empty possessions. They made some big shots when they had to. We made them work for those shots though. We just have to execute a little better down the stretch."