Boys Basketball: Lincoln-Way Central sinks Joliet Catholic
By Randy Whalen For Sun-Times Media January 22, 2014 9:52PM
Updated: January 22, 2014 10:13PM
With guard Alex Parks out with an ankle injury, Lincoln-Way Central team had to go back to the basics.
That worked to perfection, especially in the second half Wednesday. Over the final two quarters, Brad Bass scored 17 of his game-high 25 points as the Knights rallied past host Joliet Catholic 48-37.
Bass also added 13 rebounds. Kevin Mampe, who was on the other end of the two-man game, added 18 points and six boards to help Central improve to 9-7. The Hilltoppers fell to 7-12.
“We worked on a little high-low game,” Bass said. “With Parks out, me and Mampe have been working on that. But we had some really good defense from other guys, too. Joe Nealon came in and gave us big minutes and got a key layup at the end.”
Nealon’s layup capped a 10-3 spurt by the Knights, which put them ahead 43-34 with 1:32 left in the game. Colton Kolowski, who led Joliet Catholic with 12 points, hit a three-pointer to cut the lead to 43-37 with 1:22 left. But that was one of the few shots the Hilltoppers made in the final three quarters, as they went 8-of-37 from the field in the final 24 minutes.
The Knights went 5-of-6 from the line in the final 50.3 seconds to clinch the win, with Bass making all four of his free throws.
“Alex has averaged 15 points for us,” Central coach Bob Curran said of Parks, whom Curran hopes to have back next week. “So with him out we’ve had some guys thrown into situations they’re not used to.
“But I thought we really stepped it up on defense, especially in the second half. We made them catch the ball a foot or so further out and that disrupted them on the three-pointers.”
Joliet Catholic used an 11-0 run in the first quarter to take its largest lead at 13-4 with 1:39 left in the opening period. Nick Dalesandro scored six of his nine points for the Hilltoppers, who led 13-7 after one quarter, in the stretch.
Kolowski hit a 28-foot shot as the second-quarter buzzer sounded to put the Hilltoppers ahead 22-18. But Bass sank a three-pointer of his from the top of the key to put Central ahead for good at 27-25 with 5:17 to play in the third period. The Knights led 33-28 after three.
Jalen Jackson scored seven of his nine points in the second half for the Hilltoppers.
“We had some good looks at the basket,” Joliet Catholic coach Joe Gura said. “But give (Central) credit. They made us work hard on defense and we didn’t finish well on the offensive end. We had a hard time guarding Bass.
“But we’ve already got more wins this season than we did in the last two seasons combined. We have a bunch of sophomores and juniors who are battling their butts off.”