AURORA – Three starters scored in double figures and Ryan McQuade gave the Eagles a lift off the bench to lead Aurora Christian to a 55-48 victory over Marmion in Friday’s Suburban Christian Conference Blue Division contest.
Jonathan Harrell, who helped the Eagles jump to a 12-0 lead, led the Eagles with 14 points. Cory Windle and Ryan Suttle added 13 points apiece as the Eagles led throughout and never allowed the Cadets to cut their deficit to less than three points.
“Windle got hot and got us a lead, and we played some zone defense and haven’t played much zone defense,” Aurora Christian coach Pat McNamara said. “I think that helped rebound-wise because [Marmion] is aggressive and plays hard.”
Marmion (9-16, 3-6) answered the 12-0 deficit with a 9-0 run, but wouldn’t get any closer the rest of the evening.
Aurora Christian (13-11, 2-7) drained seven 3-pointers in the first half to take a commanding 33-20 lead at halftime.
“I don’t know what it is, but we have a track record of starting like that,” Marmion coach Ryan Paradise said. “I thought we just mailed it in during the first half. We didn’t do anything we worked on and didn’t get on their 3-point shooters.”
McQuade provided an emotional lift for Aurora Christian and managed to make an impact in limited minutes in his return from a knee injury.
Playing for the first time in nearly a month, McQuade knocked down a 3-pointer and converted 4 of 4 free throws to finish with 7 points.
He also snagged a pair of rebounds and once again was a difference-maker defensively, taking two charges.
“The knee feels great,” McQuade said. “I’ve been doing a lot of rehab and it feels stable and strong. It felt great to get back out there, especially after a tough loss against Aurora Central.”
The Cadets cut the Eagles lead to 39-35 on a Jordan Glasgow 3-pointer with 38 seconds left in the third-quarter, but Harrell recovered any lost momentum by sinking an off-balance three-pointer at the buzzer.
The Eagles opened the fourth quarter with a basket by Suttle and a 3-pointer from Zach Singers to extend their lead to double digits and the Cadets never got any closer than 50-44 with 1:05 remaining.
Junior Mike Sheehan led the Cadets with 17 points while Glasgow added 12 points and 5 rebounds.