Boys Basketball: Hillcrest overwhelms Oak Forest
By Scott Ehling For Sun-Times Media March 1, 2013 10:12PM
Updated: April 4, 2013 6:27AM
After watching Hillcrest guard Kyle Oden’s strip, steal and basket within the first minute of the game, one had a feeling Oak Forest was in for a long night.
“My coaches tell me to pressure their ballhandlers,” Oden said.
Hillcrest led 22-9 after the opening quarter and never looked back Friday night as the Hawks powered past Oak Forest 75-52 in the Class 3A Hillcrest Regional championship game.
“The main thing is we just told our seniors that this is the last time that they will play on their home court, so go and play your hearts out,” Hillcrest coach Don Houston said.
Hillcrest (22-6) did just that. Jovan Mooring led a balanced Hawks attack with a game-high 17 points on 5-of-14 shooting. Oden scored 14 points, while teammates Delmon Brame (9 points) and Taylor Adway (8) had big contributions as well. Hillcrest will meet Providence on Wednesday in a Rich South Sectional semifinal.
Kyle Flanagan led the Bengals (12-17) with 14 points and Jason Roland added 12.
Hillcrest connected on its first six shots from the floor to storm out to a 20-7 lead with 1:30 left in the first quarter. Because of the Hawks’ hot shooting, Oak Forest’s defense was forced out farther from the basket, which opened up several driving lanes for the Hillcrest slashing guards.
“We have some pretty good shooters and Jovan can really stretch a team’s defense,” Houston said.
Oden’s wide-open trey extended the Hawks lead to 27-9 with 5:50 left in the half.
Oak Forest never seemed to be in an offensive rhythm in the first half as it trailed 38-19 at the break, making just 7-of-22 shots while committing eight turnovers. On the flip side, Hillcrest was 17-of-29 from the floor and had just three turnovers.
“You have to pick your battles against them and we said we wanted to see them beat us from the perimeter,” Oak Forest coach Matt Manzke said. “We needed some things to go our way, and they didn’t.”