PLANO – After dropping its first game of the Plano Christmas Classic, Kaneland looked to bounce back against Genoa-Kingston on Friday afternoon.
Trailing by three at halftime, the Knights jumped out to a 7-0 run to start the third quarter and never relinquished the lead in a 52-40 victory over the Cogs.
“I thought we came out flat in the first half but in the second half, I thought we picked it up,” Kaneland’s Tyler Carlson said. “Every game, we are trying to get out to fast starts and try and put ourselves in a good position to win the game.”
Carlson led the Knights (5-3) with 15 points and 12 rebounds. Eleven of Carlson’s 15 points came in the second half, with nine coming in the fourth quarter.
Kaneland coach Brian Johnson was pleased with how his team came out Friday after its loss to Newark on Thursday.
“I am really happy with how we responded after yesterday,” Johnson said. “[Thursday] was a tough loss for us so we wanted to do some big things here but we needed to come back and play strong, and the boys responded really well.”
G-K (8-3) struggled offensively after halftime, going 4 for 22 from the field, with its first field goal not coming until 1:25 left in the third quarter. The Cogs also turned the ball over nine times in the second half.
“We are not valuing the possession at all right now, so we are struggling offensively,” G-K coach Corey Jenkins said. “The last two games here, it has just been turnover city. We are just not valuing the possession. We were getting good looks early in the season and right now, we are not getting good looks. Your percentage isn’t going to be high with the quality of shots that we are getting.”
Kaneland dominated the glass, outrebounding the Cogs, 40-22. Johnson said it was a team effort on defense.
“We contested shots and we wanted to make sure that we got a hand in the shooter’s face,” Carlson said.
John Pruett also finished with a double-double for the Knights with 12 points and 13 rebounds.
Drew David was also in double figures with 12 points, including three 3-pointers. Kaneland will play Mendota at 2 p.m. today.
For G-K, Tommy Lucca led the way with 13 points. Griffin McNeal chipped in with 10 points and seven rebounds.