Elgin 58 | Huntley 44
by: Tommy Heagney, College Editor
Members of the Huntley boys basketball team knew they would have to be on top of their game if they hoped to repeat last year’s Class 4A sectional semifinal victory against Elgin.
Unfortunately for them, Elgin senior Kory Brown was the one who came out on top of his.
Brown led the Maroons (16-1) with 30 points, matching a career high, in a complete dismantling of the Red Raiders (15-2) during the fifteenth annual National Guard High School Hoops Showdown at the Sears Center on Saturday night.
Huntley managed to hang with Elgin for much of the first quarter, and showed incredible focus for a team playing its first ever game outside of a high school gym. A key 3-pointer by senior Troy Miller and a spirited offensive effort by sophomore Amanze Egekeze kept Huntley within striking distance, but the quarter ended with Elgin ahead 17-13.
Elgin took control of the game for most of the second quarter, up 24-13 at one point. Huntley battled back though, jumping ahead with 2:08 left before the half. Elgin regained its lead on a Kory Brown free throw with 28 seconds left, however, and went into halftime leading Huntley 31-28.
What was a close game in the first half quickly morphed into an Elgin blowout in the second. It was nearly five minutes into the third quarter before Huntley finally scored on two free throws by senior Justin Fredrick, while Elgin went on a 7-0 run. Huntley was held to only 3 points in the quarter, while Elgin scored 13 to lead 44-31 going into the fourth quarter.
The fourth quarter saw more of the same for both teams, with Elgin’s smallest lead being 10 points. Elgin began to run time off the clock with over 1:37 left, and scored 12 more to make the final score 58-44.
Despite the second half drubbing, Huntley coach Marty Manning remained optimistic at the post-game news conference.
“I’m positive and happy,” said Manning. “Now we’ll be able to look at tape and see what we need to improve on to beat teams like Elgin, Rockford Auburn, schools like that.”
Miller was also optimistic despite the loss, and also described a need for improvement.
“We have to improve our defense,” said Miller. “We gave up 60 [points] and we usually don’t do that.”
Huntley will face Cary-Grove at home on Tuesday night before playing at Dundee-Crown on Saturday.
Other game notes: Miller and Egekeze led Huntley with 11 points a piece. In addition to 30 points by Brown, Elgin player Arie Williams chipped in 18. The teams may meet again during sectionals in the offseason.
1st quarter highlights
Both teams have come out strong. Huntley has managed turnovers and fouls well, but has forced some shots and is down 13-17 at the end of the quarter.
2nd quarter highlights
Elgin led by as many as 8 points at the start of the second quarter, but Huntley dug itself out of the hole behind shots from senior Troy Miller and sophomore Amanze Egekeze. Elgin regained the lead with only 28 seconds remaining, however, and goes into halftime leading Huntley 31-28.
3rd quarter highlights
Elgin has absolutely dominated the 3rd quarter on both offense and defense. Poor Huntley shooting combined with solid play by Elgin has propelled Elgin to a 44-31 lead at the end of the 3rd. It is important to note that Huntley was held to only 3 points in the quarter.
4th quarter highlights
Huntley attempted to make a come back in the 4th quarter, but failed. Elgin won the game. Check back later tonight for a game summary.
Reporting by: Tommy Heagney & Michael Geheren
Photos by: Mike Krebs