Wheaton Academy ousts Cary-Grove, will meet top seed in regional final

Wheaton Academy jumped out fast on Cary-Grove with 3s from Alex Moncau and Wandy Munoz and led the Trojans 28-13 by halftime of Wednesday’s Class 3A Cary-Grove semifinal regional semifinal.

No. 4 Wheaton Academy (18-11) will meet Crystal Lake South in Friday’s 6:30 p.m. championship. The Warriors beat No. 5 Cary-Grove 58-41 in the second semifinal, ending the Trojans’ season at 15-17.

“We hit some 3s early, and that opens up space for us to play fast and get downhill,” Warriors coach Dan Smith said. “That really helped, along with our defense. We came out and tried to put it all together. We switched and tried to do it aggressively, know where their shooters were and played the assignments well.”

Ty Smith led Wheaton Academy with 15 points, Munoz added 11 and Hayden Schroeder had 11.

Jake Hornok topped the Trojans with 17 points.

C-G coach Adam McCloud knew Wheaton Academy’s size – three players 6-foot-6 or taller starting – might pose problems.

“They made shots. We were worried about their length,” McCloud said. “Their point guard (Munoz) is really tough to guard. He’s like an AJ (Demirov), the kind of kid where he can get downhill and make plays.

“We struggled offensively. We just couldn’t get in a rhythm. We just didn’t have it tonight. They’re going to be a tough matchup for South on Friday.”

The championship game will see two teams with great size and dynamic point guards.

“We’ve seen them twice,” Dan Smith said. “They’re tough. The Demirov kid is a stellar player, they have size and run that zone. Prairie Ridge did a good job hitting 3s, and South still won.

“To beat them, you’re going to have to give your best effort and you’re not going to be able to let AJ get going. I think Wandy Munoz vs. Demirov will be a great battle. Wandy has been our floor general all year. He’ll pick him up full court, and we’ll get after it.”

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