Boys Basketball: Seton reaches Class 2A state semifinals
By Steve Millar For Sun-Times Media March 6, 2013 10:24PM
Providence St. Mel's Khalil Small, left battles Seton's Tevin King for the ball in the first quarter of their supersectional game Wednesday, March 6, 2013, in Joliet, Illinois. Photo by Frank Polich
Updated: April 8, 2013 7:41AM
Seton big man Alex Foster kept his team afloat early Wednesday night, scoring all seven of its first-quarter points and finishing the half with nine points and eight rebounds.
The Sting knew, though, that to get back to state it would need more production from its guards.
Mark Weems Jr. answered the call, scoring 11 of his game-high 18 points after the break, including a huge three-point play down the stretch as Seton held on for a 46-45 win over Providence-St. Mel in the Class 2A Joliet Central Supersectional.
The win earns Seton, which finished fourth a year ago, a spot in the state semifinals against Winnebago at 6:30 p.m. Friday in the Peoria Civic Center.
“It’s all about redemption for us this year,” Weems said. “We want to get back and win it all this time.”
After twice missing the front end of a one-and-one in the final minute, the Sting (22-10) dodged a bullet when Tevin King’s off-balance runner — altered by Foster — was off the mark with three seconds to go.
Foster finished with 11 points and 11 rebounds, punching his first ticket to state with the Sting after transferring from De La Salle before the season. Kamal Shahsi added four points and nine rebounds.
Khalil Small (15 points, 7 rebounds), King (7 points) and Joshuan McNeal (7 points) led the Knights (25-6).
Seton, which held a 16-6 edge in the third quarter, led 43-34 with 5:57 to go when the Knights went on an 8-0 burst, getting six points from Bernard Lilly Jr.
Weems answered, driving down the lane for a three-point play with 2:04 to go.
“That was a big play,” Weems said. “We just had to play composed when they went on their run.”
The Knights led 23-22 at the half, but were just 2-of-16 from the field in the third.
“It all started with defense,” Foster said. “We knew this team couldn’t handle our defense.
“All I can say is this isn’t over yet for us.”