Fast-paced Warren rolls past Stevenson

Warren has been generating plenty of buzz this season with an impressive collection of young talent.

As the lone senior in the starting lineup, 6-foot-6 center Alex Daniels can serve as the veteran mentor and pass along some wisdom to his younger teammates. Or is that even necessary?

"There's definitely areas where the younger guys can mature, but at the same time the young guys are also really good and skilled and talented," Daniels said. "I don't have to do as much as maybe you would think."

Daniels was one of four players to score in double figures as Warren cruised past North Suburban Conference rival Stevenson 66-44 on Saturday in Gurnee.

Junior Javerion Banks led the way with 19 points, followed by freshman Jaxson Davis with 13, while Daniels and Immanuel Brown had 10 each.

It was a typical performance by the Blue Devils (8-1), fast-paced and loaded with fastbreaks. Stevenson pulled within striking distance a few times, but with Warren getting steals and running the floor, the lead could grow quickly.

"We're trying to get up and down, and hopefully make the game fun for people that watch," Warren coach Zack Davis said. "They're all unselfish, which helps too."

For Stevenson, junior Aiden Bardic scored 14 points, senior Jack Dabbs had 11 and sophomore Rocco Pagliocca added 9.

Warren starts a freshman, sophomore, two juniors and a senior, but the players are more connected than it may seem. Daniels explained how most of them played for the Gurnee Demons, a program led by assistant coach Brian Davis, father of Jaxson.

"When I was in eighth grade, I was playing with Jaxson when he was in fifth grade," Daniels said. "I was playing with Manny, Josh Stewart, it was like all of us growing up and playing together. We've all known each other for a while.

"We don't care who scores. It's just different people every time on the leaderboard. It's just nice to play with all those guys."

The familiarity made it easy to welcome Davis into the mix. Stevenson coach Will Benson said the 6-1 guard is the best freshman he's seen in his 14 years as a head coach. It would probably be safe to describe Davis as the best freshman in Lake County since Jalen Brunson arrived at Stevenson roughly a decade ago.

"Alex was all-conference last year," Ryan said. "So that's the thing. We have a lot of returners that played and got good experience, then we throw in a really good freshman into the mix and it's been a nice chemistry. These guys have all been very welcoming of him."

Benson replaced longtime Stevenson coach Pat Ambrose this year, so the Patriots might need some time to get settled in with a new cast.

"It's a tough week, you play Lake Zurich and Warren," Benson said. "A dream scenario, you go 2-0; you'll take 1-1 and hope you don't go 0-2. So we had to fight and scrap and claw on Wednesday. No rest for the weary."

Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.