AURORA – The Aurora Central Catholic boys basketball team’s ability to make adjustments offensively made the difference as the Chargers downed Suburban Christian Conference foe Aurora Christian, 53-42, on Friday night.
“We like to shoot the three and play uptempo – that’s awesome when it is going in,” ACC coach Nate Drye said. “But when it’s not going in you got to make adjustments. I thought we did a great job in the second half on adjusting to not having a good shooting night.”
Drye’s former assistant, new Aurora Christian coach Pat McNamara, tried to do the same with the Eagles.
“We made a couple of adjustments [in the second half],” McNamara said. “We ran a different offense in the second half. We just didn’t do a very good job penetrating and passing.”
Neither the Chargers (6-2, 2-1 SCC Blue) nor the Eagles could find the basket in the first half. ACC went into the locker room, leading 17-15. The teams combined for only 10 buckets in the first two quarters of the contest with three of the baskets coming in the last minute of the half.
ACC was 5 for 21 from the field while Aurora Christian (3-4, 0-3) hit five of 25 shots. Starting with 3:16 left in the first quarter, neither team swished the nets for eight minutes.
The Eagles’ Johnathan Harrell (seven points) broke the drought exactly a quarter later with his put-back of a missed Aurora Christian trey with the same amount of time left in the second frame.
“We didn’t take advantage on the boards. Central’s Achilles Heel all season has been the defense boards,” McNamara said. “We didn’t take advantage of it. We didn’t get guys going to the glass.”
ACC shooters found its mark in the third quarter as they connected on eight baskets, going on a 13-5 run as the host Chargers ended the period leading, 41-29.
“We did a better job of running our offense and getting some cuts to the basket,” Drye said. “We got some easier looks in the second half, which was probably the difference in the game.”
The Eagles kept pace with ACC early in the second half. But after another Harrell basket early in the period cut the Chargers’ lead to 26-21, Aurora Christian hit another scoring drought. Senior Cory Windle ended the dry spell with two minutes left in the quarter with a trey .
Phil Schuetz led ACC with 13 points. Teammates Anthony Andujar tallied 11 and Zach Flint added 10.
The Eagles’ Ryan Suttle scored 13. Wes Wolfe, Ryan McQuade and Harrell all contributed seven points for Aurora Christian.