Barrington has easy time with Crystal Lake Central
Barrington boys basketball coach Bryan Tucker was asked what he liked about his team's defense in the season opener Monday against Crystal Lake Central and chuckled.
"Not much," Tucker said.
Still, the Broncos' coach was pleased enough with what he saw on the other end as Barrington shot 59.6% from the field and ran away from the Tigers, 75-45, in their first game of the Crystal Lake Central Thanksgiving Tournament at the Central Fieldhouse.
"Our kids did a nice job pushing the basketball, sharing the basketball," Tucker said. "We had some breakdowns on defense. That's where it looked like the first game. (On offense) we got a lot of good looks, comfortable looks. We reacted, they were changing defenses and different things and our guys really didn't flinch. They did a nice job and executed."
The Broncos (1-0) hit 66.7% in the first half (18 of 27) and made their four 3-pointers all in the 23-point second quarter to lead, 43-25 at halftime. Damian Zivak led the way with 20 points, Aaron Sarkar added 16 and Connor Keenan scored 10.
"It was a really good start for us after losing a bunch of seniors who played a lot last year," Zivak said. "It was a good start to get everybody comfortable. We moved the ball pretty well, that was probably the most important thing for us. That's how we usually play within our offense and get in the flow of the game."
Zivak connected on 8-of-12 field goals, while Sarkar was 7 of 10.
Central, which was 20-12 and tied for the Fox Valley Conference championship last season, graduated five starters and does not have many experienced varsity players. First-year Tigers coach Joe Capalbo said his team has to grow.
"It's definitely a learning process," Capalbo said. "We'll get there. The kids played hard. That's what we asked them to do. We knew Barrington was going to be tough. For the most part, we gave them a battle. We never quit, even though the scoreboard was not in our favor."
Guard Ryan Mendoza was in the Tigers' rotation last season and is their most experienced player. He missed his first four shots, but made his next seven and led Central (0-1) with 15 points.
"I just tried to help my team any way I can, give us the best chance to get some momentum and get going," Mendoza said. "We had a rough end of the first half. I just wanted to come out with some energy and motivate our guys."
Mendoza hit a 3 to start the second half and made three more midrange jumpers for Central's first nine points of the second half.
Blake Pokora hit two 3s and added eight points for the Tigers. Reid Solberg had two 3s and six points.