Rolling Meadows rolls past Elk Grove
Reigning Mid-Suburban League boys basketball champion Rolling Meadows trotted its way into Elk Grove Friday evening seeking a 3-0 divisional mark to take into the holiday break.
Once the opening tip took place, that trot turned into a speedy gallop, which allowed it to bolt past the host Grenadiers 86-46 in an MSL East game at Charles Aldrich Gymnasium.
"Every day at practice we really get after it. We go hard so it's always a competition," Meadows junior center Mark Nikolich-Wilson said. "So, it helps us get better."
The Mustangs (8-1, 3-0) tallied the game's first 10 points over the first 3:53 before Elk Grove got on the scoreboard with a Jaden Alberson basket. After a Kevin Periaswamy 3-pointer kept the hosts within 10 at 18-8 at the 2:12 mark of the opening period, Meadows proceeded to run off the next 28 points that left it comfortably ahead 46-8 when forward Ryan Schoessling scored 2 of his 9 points on a putback with 3:03 remaining until the break, when Meadows led 52-20.
A 23-6 run that began the second half gave the Mustangs their biggest lead of the night at 75-26 with 2:01 left in the third.
The 6-foot-7 Nikolich-Wilson (10 points, 6 rebounds) was part of a quintet of Mustangs in double-figures in the scoring column for Kevin Katovich's unit. Junior sharpshooter Cameron Christie led with 18 points. Senior guard Jake Lane added 12 followed by fellow fourth-year mate Orlando Thomas and freshman swingman Ian Miletic with 11 points apiece.
Katovich, whose teams are 24-1 dating back to last winter's six-week season, credits his program's success due in large part to its veteran leadership.
"It starts with (obviously) those guys," Katovich said. "(They) pretty much do all that for us. As coaches we don't need to do much when your players are handling that stuff."
Junior forward Dylan McCorry's double-double (10 points, 10 rebounds) led Elk Grove (2-8, 0-3). The Grenadiers will host Lake Park on Wednesday night prior to their debut match at the Maine East Holiday Tournament on December 27 vs. Chicago Kennedy.
Meanwhile, a Saturday evening trip to Libertyville before an opening round tilt against St. Laurence at Yorks Jack Tosh Holiday Classic on December 27 is on the Meadows agenda, which for Nikolich-Wilson will be business as usual.
"We've got to come in tomorrow and get it done in a nonconference game," he said. "We've got to do it again. That's all."