King leads Lisle past Coal City

It doesn't matter if Lisle sees zone or man-to-man defense.

Demetrius King Jr. is going to bring it.

Behind the senior guard's 25 points, 13 rebounds and 3 steals and solid team defense and rebounding, Lisle's boys basketball team beat Coal City 54-41 on Tuesday in Lisle.

"This is the first time that our seniors have beaten Coal City in basketball," coach Mark LaScala said after the Illinois Central Eight leader improved to 9-8 overall and 6-0 in conference.

"Coal City won the league last year with basically that same team. It was a big moment for those kids and I'm super proud of their effort on defense," LaScala said.

Plano (8-9, 3-3) had beaten Lisle by 11 points at Plano's Christmas Classic.

On Tuesday the Coalers opened in a 1-2-2 zone. After Lisle led 22-15 at halftime, it went man-to-man to "speed up the game a little bit and generate some offense," said Coal City coach Glenn Pacek.

King scored 9 points in the first half, 5 in the third quarter and 11 in the fourth.

"I prefer it to be a man (defense) because it's easier to attack because I knew that their guys couldn't guard me and my guys," King said.

"I just thought I was playing well. I felt like I had it in the first half. Coach just told me, they can't guard you, go baseline, just keep attacking. And that's what I did."

Regardless of defense, Coal City's shooting did them few favors. The Coalers shot 7 of 28 in the first half, 18 of 63 for the game. Austin Pullara had scored 26 against Lisle at Plano but managed 14 on Tuesday.

"We can shoot better than that," Pacek said. "We wanted to establish inside and kick it out. When we kicked it out we didn't make the shots."

"I'd like to think our defense had something to do with that," said LaScala, praising senior guard Connor Nigro's work on Pullara.

Coal City's man-to-man defense did spark the Coalers as Pacek intended.

A Payton Hutchings 3 tied the score 24-24 midway through the third quarter. Lisle's Cal Payne responded with a 3, followed by King's coast-to-coast layup and 3.

"That was huge," LaScala said.

Ray Bandzoumouna and Josh Farrell baskets gave Lisle a 36-30 lead after three quarters. After Farrell opened the fourth scoring on King's inbounds pass, and King stole the ball and scored, Lisle maintained a safe lead.

King, Farrell, Payne, Sean Martin and Anthony Raineri paced Lisle's 42-34 rebounding edge over leapers Kyle Burch and Jarod Garrelts.

"We've just really got to match their energy," said Farrell, off the bench with 6 points and 6 rebounds. "We've emphasized energy and defense all year long. That was really what the focus was on."

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