Roberts with another big game as Hersey knocks off Maine South
Ethan Roberts stayed hot.
One game removed from posting a career-high 42 points last Friday, the Hersey guard continued his smoldering outside shooting by drilling two game-changing 3-pointers Monday at Maine South.
Roberts scored 27 points and added 5 rebounds and 3 steals as the Huskies secured the impressive 62-59 nonconference boys basketball victory in Park Ridge.
Roberts converted 5 of the Huskies' 9 made 3s. In a back-and-forth game that featured four lead changes, his shot making revealed a flair for the dramatic.
Roberts drilled a 22-foot 3-pointer that gave the Huskies a lead at 48-45 it never relinquished.
"In the fourth quarter when it's tight and you hit 3-pointers like that, there is not much more momentum you can gain from that," Roberts said.
"Every bucket really counts."
Just as crucial, his basket ended an 8-0 Maine South burst. It was emblematic of a game that saw counter actions and movements by both sides.
Maine South (4-3) had a 12-2 run to end the first quarter. Hersey (3-1) countered with a 16-6 run to end the first half.
Forward Marko Anderson led the Hawks with 16 points and 7 rebounds. His turnaround on the opening possession of the fourth quarter marked the game's fifth tie.
On the ensuing possession, Roberts caught a pass from point guard Andrew Wagner and let fly in rhythm. Following a defensive stop, Wagner (8 points, 4 assists) extended the lead to 51-45 by connecting on his own 3-pointer.
Underscoring his touch of late, Roberts banked in a 3-pointer from the right wing that pushed the lead to 7 points.
"That one felt good," he said.
Maine South (4-3) demonstrated its own special brand of toughness and resolve behind its superb trio of Anderson, guard Sean Gallery (14 points, 8 rebounds) and forward Milan Adomic (11 points, 3 3s).
Their pressure defense forced 5 Hersey turnovers in the third quarter.
Shooting is the great equalizer. That helped the Huskies nullify the Hawks' runs and negate some of their size advantage on the inside.
Forward Griffin Ginder was the ideal complementary piece to the outside shooting of Roberts. He scored 15 points and added 7 rebounds.
Ginder also made 2 3-pointers. His 3-pointer extended the Huskies' margin to 59-52 with 2:10 remaining. Significantly, his 3-pointer followed a 3 by Maine South's Adomic.
Hersey's Ben Randall and Jack Muglia contributed 6 points apiece.
One of the unintended consequences of the pandemic-related conditions is the absence of a crowd and significant background noise that favors the shooters.
"Everything is different," Ginder said. "When a team travels and you hit those shots, it just brings a lot of energy."