Schaumburg hangs on to beat Lakes
Schaumburg's boys basketball team is used to quick starts and slow finishes this season. On the other hand, Lakes has slow starts but strong finishes.
So when the two teams met Saturday afternoon in Schaumburg, the end result was a heart-pounder.
The Saxons held on 47-42 in nonconference play to improve to 6-4. The hard-luck Eagles, who only had 7 players in uniform, fell to 5-7.
Schaumburg led 16-1 after the first quarter and all five starters contributed. The Saxons then led 24-10 at the halftime break. Schaumburg held a 38-17 lead after three quarters and seemed to be on cruise control.
"These slow starts are something we talk about, but it didn't happen today," said Lakes head coach Chris Snyder. "This group just doesn't quit and it was good to see that. They have resolve. We're going to get there, we just need to get some good starts and if so we could do some pretty good things on the court. We'll figure it out."
Senior guard Ethan McGruder, who would score 17 points to lead the Eagles, reflected on his team's slow starts.
"We just have a slow motor when the game starts," said McGruder. "It seems like it takes us to halftime to re-adjust and figure out what the opponent has. It's been a tough fight for us. I'm just hoping we start having first quarters like we had today in the fourth quarter. I think we could be a much better team with better starts."
Behind McGruder's 14 fourth-quarter points and 5 points from Brock Marino, who would score 11 points for Lakes, the Eagles cut the Schaumburg lead to 46-42 with 16 seconds left in the game.
Jordan Tunis (11 points) would hit a final free throw for the Saxons with 12 seconds left.
D.J. Wilson was a big contributor in the Saxons' win.
"This was a good win for us after the loss (to Conant) Friday night," said Wilson. "I worked hard and put in extra hours over the summer to make my game better. They got hot in the fourth quarter and during timeouts we talked about staying and sticking together on defense."
Wilson had a steady weekend with 18 points and 9 rebounds. Nicholas Doroskin, who is picking up interest from North Central College, had 9 points, 6 rebounds and 2 blocked shots.
"D J has become a very good player and for Tunis the future is bright," said Schaumburg coach Wade Heisler.
The win helped the Saxons surpass last spring's win total of five.
"I'm happy with the win, obviously," said Heisler. "To give up only 17 points in the first three quarters and then 25 in the fourth is not something I'm excited about. But, in a way it was good because we need to learn how to hang onto games when we have leads. We played to win and not to lose. As we grow and keep our mentality of getting better it will all play out."