Hersey's balanced attack too much for Libertyville

A huge run at the end of the first half spelled doom for the Lake Zurich boys basketball team when the Bears faced host Hersey in nonconference action Saturday afternoon.W@

Lake Zurich only trailed the Huskies 24-23 with 3:27 left in the second quarter. But an 18-2 run by Hersey (8-5) to end the period gave the hosts a commanding 42-25 lead at the intermission.

From there, the Bears (5-4) were never able to seriously cut into the lead. The Huskies led 52-39 after three quarters before pulling away in the end for a 66-45 victory as Hersey closed out the weekend with a 2-0 record.

Lake Zurich did hold an early 8-2 lead after a fast start. But they trailed 18-14 after one quarter before being outscored 24-11 in what proved to be a devastating quarter for the Bears.

At one point, the Huskies went on a 14-point run as a steal and basket by Jared Ryg gave Hersey its biggest lead of the contest at 44-25 early in the third quarter.

The Huskies used a balanced scoring attack again as Johnny Ryg scored a team-high 17 points followed by Max Menninga with 13 points, Jared Ryg with 12 points, and Jackson Hupp with 11 points.

“We had a nice little run in the second quarter there when we were kicking it out from the post and it was good emphasis because our offense works best when we work in and out,” said Johnny Ryg, who pointed to a few keys. “Definitely trusting each other and just knowing that your teammates are going to be there for you and that your teammates are going to make the right play.”

Six-foot-6 Lake Zurich sophomore Anton Strelnikov scored 12 of his game-high 18 points in the first half. But the Bears never got closer than 50-39 late in the third quarter.

Senior Brendan Powers scored 9 points for Lake Zurich while teammates Ryan Carrol and Nick Popovic chipped in 7 points apiece.

Hersey is off now until the Huskies head south for the Pekin Holiday tourney beginning on Dec. 27.

“Good teams take advantage of breaks. I thought that is something we did today, and we're moving in the right direction and trending up toward the holidays which is the turning point in a lot of seasons,” said Hersey coach Austin Scott, who played his high school basketball at Lake Zurich. “I think that our arrow is pointed up which is great to see. We're balanced, and our whole is bigger than the sum of its parts. That's something that we preach and emphasize, and it's great to see it kind of come into fruition.”

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