WEST CHICAGO – The Wheaton Academy boys basketball team opened the game with back-to-back 3-pointers as the Warriors netted five total in the first quarter to bury Aurora Central Catholic early en route to a 54-25 win Friday in Suburban Christian Conference Blue play.
The game was never in question as the Warriors used smothering defense and quick hands in the passing lanes to force 16 turnovers by the Chargers (9-9, 4-4).
The Warriors held their opponent to 10 second-half points, including one point in the third quarter.
The combination of the strong shooting by the Warriors (14-5, 6-1) and the Chargers’ inability to generate anything on offense made for a rough night, said ACC coach Nate Drye.
“We didn’t guard them at all, gave them wide open looks and they knocked them down. We didn’t make any shots – pretty poor combination,” Drye said. “We weren’t real patient, we didn’t run our stuff and jacked up the first shot we saw.”
Leading the Warriors on offense was junior forward Gordon Behr, who led the team with 16 points, 14 of those coming in the first half.
The Wheaton Academy Maroon Platoon was dressed completely in beach attire as they celebrated Middle School Night. Behr said the crowd provided energy to the team.
“We came out with a lot of energy tonight, we were able to work the ball inside out and hit our open shots,” Behr said. “I think our crowd intimidated them tonight.”
While Behr paced the team on offense, senior guard Collin Roy spearheaded the Warriors’ aggressive zone defense.
Roy led the team with three steals and added 10 points, including two 3-pointers.
Senior guards Gabe Partain and Jake Cousins added eight points and seven points, respectively.
Senior Brandon Ruggles ended with six points and added an aggressive layup plus a foul shot that gave the team a 31-point lead in the third quarter.
The largest lead of the game was 32 for the Warriors.
Senior guard Jacob May led the Chargers in scoring with six points.
Overall, Wheaton Academy coach Paul Ferguson was pleased with his team’s effort on both ends of the court.
“We had a great start to the game, shot the ball really well, guys were really focused, and we turned them over with some of our pressure,” Ferguson said. “We thought we could turn them over and get some offense out of our defense and the crowd was huge tonight. They were real enthusiastic ... and that kind of gave us the extra spark to start the game.