The St. Charles North boys basketball team faced Metea Valley in an Upstate Eight Conference crossover on Thursday night, but many members of the North community also were focused on the goings-on in Genoa.
That's where Mark Smith was coaching the Burlington Central girls against Sterling in the 3A Genoa-Kingston Sectional final. A North math teacher and the first boys hoops coach in North program history, Smith is in his first season on Rocket Hill.
It's been a great success so far. In thumping Sterling, 49-26, Central (27-4) extended its single-season school record for victories and advanced to Monday's Hoffman Estates Supersectional against Vernon Hills.
North Stars coach Tom Poulin – who succeded Smith in 2006 – was talking with assistants about Central before the Metea game and was glad to hear of Thursday's triumph.
"We're all keeping tabs and following all the results and are really, really happy for [Smith]," Poulin said. "Everybody at North is real excited."