Balance helps Schaumburg get off to hot start

  • Schaumburg's Vaurice Patterson scores on a breakaway after making a steal during boys basketball action at the Crystal Lake Central Thanksgiving tournament.

      Schaumburg's Vaurice Patterson scores on a breakaway after making a steal during boys basketball action at the Crystal Lake Central Thanksgiving tournament. Rick West | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 12/5/2019 8:42 PM

Already, the Schaumburg boys basketball team has found a nice balance in its lineup.

The Saxons went 4-0 in the Crystal Lake Central Thanksgiving tournament by playing inside-out basketball.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"We moved the ball well, we shot the ball well, and we're getting the ball in the post," Schaumburg coach Wade Heisler said. "We also have a lot of kids who can contribute, so we're pretty deep."

The offense starts with 6-foot-8 junior forward Chris Hodges, a Wisconsin commit who is averaging a team-leading 18 points per game. Just like last year, he is a force inside, but he is also feeling more comfortable from long range, having worked tirelessly on his 3-point shot over the offseason. He went 3-for-3 from 3-point range at Crystal Lake Central.

"Chris is bigger and stronger inside and he can shoot, as he proved at the tournament, He has the green light from the perimeter because he put the time in to be able to shoot that shot," Heisler said. "The nice thing is that we have a lot of other kids who can really shoot it from the perimeter and that spaces the floor and opens up even more for Chris inside."

Heisler says that Joey Sturino, Armen Torosian, Arnav Karnik, Vaurice Patterson and Jared Schoo are all threats from 3-point range.

Savvy sophomore: After a year of apprenticeship under star guard Mike Hodges, sophomore guard Vaurice Patterson is now ready to take over as point guard for Schaumburg.

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Patterson, a freshman last year, backed up Hodges, who is now playing in college at Culver-Stockton. As the season went along and Patterson got more comfortable, he played more point and Hodges slid over to the 2-guard spot. That allowed Patterson to average about 14 minutes per game.

"That was a great place for Vaurice to learn," Schaumburg coach Wade Heisler said of Patterson backing up and playing alongside Hodges. "He has such poise this year that we as coaches sometimes forget he is just a sophomore. He puts so much work in that you can tell he just brings a comfortableness to the game."

Holiday happening: For the fifth straight year, the Schaumburg boys basketball team will be doing its best Santa impersonation.

The Saxons on Thursday began their annual Adopt-A-Family tradition where each player raises money by doing chores at home. Just before Christmas, the players pool their money and go out and purchase presents for a local family in need.

"We go to the store, we pick out the presents," Schaumburg coach Wade Heisler said. "It's one of many community service events we do each year and we feel really good about it. We hope to teach the kids that there is more than basketball."

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