Hoffman Estates' strong finish does in Conant

By Greg Swiderski
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 1/20/2022 10:21 PM

Hoffman Estates' boys basketball team started its game with visiting Conant with a strong start and finished even stronger.

The Hawks, after trailing 48-45 with 4:28 left in the game, went on a 17-3 run to finish off the Cougars 62-51 in the Mid-Suburban West Thursday night.


"We came together at the end of the game," said Hoffman center DJ Wallace. "It was an entire team effort for us. We put it all together when it counted. Tonight we wanted to be the best team in Hoffman Estates."

The win over Conant (10-9, 2-3) offset a 40-36 loss to the Cougars on Dec. 3. The Hawks are now 15-3 overall and 3-3 in the Mid-Suburban West.

Conant overcame Hoffman's 8-2 lead in the first quarter, finishing the frame with a 16-11 lead.

Leading 23-13 in the second quarter, the Hawks pulled to within 23-21 on the strength of Mike Vuckovic's 8 straight points. Michael Sheehy's 3-pointer near the end of the half gave Conant a 26-21 lead.

Hoffman got back in the game with a 10-3 run to lead 31-29 in the first three minutes of the third quarter, but Conant tied the game at 36 behind a basket from Camden Lathos (11 points) with 42 seconds left in the quarter.

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Hoffman took the lead for good at 50-48 with 2:50 left in the game on Nick Vuckovic's 3-pointer. Mike Vuckovic followed with a corner 3-pointer on an assist from Nick Vuckovic. Both players scored 16 points.

"We had to play and make big time plays down the stretch, " said Nick Vuckovic.

Sheehy and Isaac Hanley led Conant with 9 points.

"I'm proud of our guys," said Conant coach Matt Walsh. "We battled throughout the night. We'll learn from this experience. Credit Hoffman for making big plays and finding ways to win."

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