New Trier decisively ends West Aurora winning streak
PONTIAC -- The West Aurora hopes of containing the lethal shooters for New Trier unraveled in a hurry Wednesday afternoon at the famed Pontiac Holiday Tournament.
The Blackhawks' boys basketball team had their six-game winning streak unceremoniously snapped by the Trevians' unstoppable efficiency from the perimeter.
Three different New Trier players drained 3-pointers on consecutive first-quarter possessions, and West Aurora never recovered as the Trevians breezed to a 53-32 victory in the PHT quarterfinals.
The final score was not nearly indicative of the Trevians' freely imposing their will throughout the game as West Aurora made the final score more palatable by scoring the last 13 points of the contest.
The third-seeded Trevians (14-1) captured their sixth win in succession in ending the Blackhawks' identical run.
West Aurora (8-4) will play Oak Park-River Forest in a fifth-place semifinal Thursday morning.
The Blackahwks' lone lead came on split free throws on the second possession of the game.
But New Trier never trailed after Jake Feigen, Josh Kirkpatrick and Karlo Colak hit 3-pointers on consecutive possessions.
The Trevians' accuracy from distance was a dominant storyline in the game.
New Trier hit nine 3-pointers overall; 11 of the Trevians' first-half field-goal attempts found their desired destination as the team fired away at a 73-percent efficiency clip in the first two quarters in building a 33-16 lead at the half.
"Together as a team, we thought we were playing good defense against them," West Aurora three-year varsity guard Isaiah Siler said. "We have never faced a team that could shoot as well as them. We tried and tried, but they were penetrating the paint as well."
The Trevians, ended the game shooting 66 percent from the field (19-for-29).
West Aurora, meanwhile, was at the other end of the efficiency spectrum; New Trier ended all suspense by limiting the Blackhawks, who shot 24 percent from the field (8 of 34), to 3 points in the third quarter.
Ty Rogers and Josh Pickett, who spearheaded the Blackhawks' first-day win over Lockport with a combined 31 points, led the way with 7 each.
Colak, the Trevians' sixth man, scored that many in succession to close out the first quarter as the senior guard led both teams with 15 points.
"I work on shooting every day," said Kolak, who hit one-third of the Trevians' nine 3-pointers. "We have a very good offense, and I was able to get open through the offense and knock down my shots."
"We wanted to play them tight and keep them off the arc," West Aurora coach Brian Johnson said. "We were trying to keep them at bay, but they're going to hit shots. I liked the shots we were getting, (but) we weren't necessarily finishing them."