Boys Basketball: Stagg topples Homewood-Flossmoor 80-64
By Tony Baranek email@example.com December 6, 2013 9:46PM
Stagg's Kevin White (3) lays up at the basket in Flossmoor Friday, December, 6, 2013. | Jim Boyce/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: January 9, 2014 6:45AM
It was a thunderous punch, one that left Stagg with a 26-point lead midway through the second quarter.
But Friday night’s battle between the Chargers and host Homewood-Flossmoor didn’t end with a first-half knockout.
Stagg had to withstand a furious H-F comeback before securing an 80-64 victory in a SouthWest Suburban Blue opener.
Kevin White had 25 points, Jeff Goral 19 points, Max Strus 15 points and seven rebounds and Anthony Gardner eight points and 13 rebounds as Stagg improved to 5-0, 1-0.
Jaylen Thompson and Dorian McCraney had 13 points each, Davon Smith 14 points and Tai Odiase and Destin Barnes 10 each for H-F (3-3, 0-1).
It was a game of incredible point swings.
Stagg was the first to step up, hitting 10 consecutive shots in the first quarter en route to a 25-8 lead. Goral, who had been in the early season shadow of Strus and White, lit up for 14 of the points.
“My teammates were dishing out, Kevin White was driving and kicking out to me, and they were looking for me on threes,” Goral said.
He didn’t disappoint, hitting for a trio of treys and going 5-of-5.
The Chargers onslaught didn’t stop there. Another points flurry early in the second period peaked when Brett Stratinsky went in for a layup to make it 41-15.
It was then the Vikings, just 4-of-26 from the field, did an about-face.
Barnes went to the basket and was fouled. He converted both free throws. Then H-F’s pressure defense started to kick in.
Stagg had no wide-open threes, and began to turn the ball over. At the other end, H-F kept attacking.
By the end of the first half, it was a 44-28 proposition. By the early part of the third period, it was a single-digit deficit. When McCraney hit a running jumper with 3:52 showing in the period, it was 48-44.
“We knew they were going to come back on the run,” White said. “But even though they made that run, we kept our composure.”
Stagg had gone 11 possessions without a field goal in the third period before White swished a three-pointer from the right wing to stop a 16-0 H-F run.
“My teammates, they trust me to make big shots,” White said.
The bucket gave some stability to the Chargers, who led 59-51 after three quarters.
H-F suffered a big blow when Smith, who had scored nine points in the third period, fouled out with 5:23 remaining. Stagg, leading 65-58 at the time, scored on its final seven possessions to ease away.