AURORA – The Aurora Christian girls basketball team had some late-season magic in winning a regional last week, but its state series fairy tale came to an abrupt ending during Tuesday’s IHSA Class 2A Aurora Christian sectional semifinal.
Byron scored the first 21 points of the third quarter to turn its 28-14 halftime lead into a rout, cruising to a 62-26 victory.
“We couldn’t get on track offensively,” Aurora Christian coach Jerry Tokars said. “We didn’t get the looks that we’ve gotten the last couple games, and quite frankly, all season against the zone.”
Aurora Christian, which finishes its season at 15-14, only scored two points in the first quarter, but Bryon couldn’t get on track offensively either, scoring just eight points.
The Tigers (28-3) began to pull away in the second quarter, although the Eagles rallied before intermission.
“We got two quick buckets there and as a coach you’re just looking for that little bit,” Tokars said. “I thought that was it and then they got that layup and (we’re) still down 14, but we’ve come back from even bigger leads.”
Any hopes for a second-half rally dissipated shortly thereafter, as the Eagles were outscored, 21-2, in the third quarter.
“We didn’t run alot, and there were several characteristics of our game that didn’t happen,” Tokars said. “You could probably look at the film and you might say that they had a to do with it. I’m sure they did.”
Byron’s 5-foot-5 sophomore Mason Whipple gave the Eagles plenty of trouble, scoring a game-high 18 points.
“They’re a good team,” Tokars said. “(Whipple) didn’t look like that on film. She stepped up her game. Give her a lot of credit. They stepped up.”
Melissa Moser and Alyssa Anderson each scored eight points for Aurora Christian.
Class 3A Timothy Christian Regional – Wheaton Academy 73, Chicago VOISE Academy 9: At Elmhurst, Wheaton Academy rolled to advance to Thursday’s regional final against Nazareth Academy.
Benet 63, Wheaton Academy 48: At West Chicago, Wheaton Academy was unable to make up for its first-half struggles, playing the Redwings about even after trailing, 31-17, at the break.
Gordon Behr (15 points) and Josh Ruggles (10) finished in double figures for the 16-8 Warriors. Wheaton Academy shot 4 of 17 from 3-point range while Benet finished 10 for 24.
• Chris Walker contributed to this report.