Boys basketball: L-P scores first 20 points in rout of Sycamore

Seth Adams

LA SALLE - Senior guard Seth Adams felt the La Salle-Peru boys basketball team didn’t play well in its four-point loss at Sycamore on Dec. 1.

So when the Spartans came to L-P for an Interstate 8 Conference game Thursday, the Cavaliers wanted to be ready to go. They were from the start.

L-P scored the first 20 points of the game and rolled to a 63-38 victory.

“We lost last time and we didn’t do the things we needed to do,” Adams said. “We got back to the things we need to do. We pressured the ball and we hit shots.”

Adams got the Cavs started on a bucket off an assist from Josh Senica on L-P’s first possession.

The Cavs knocked down four 3-pointers in the first quarter, two from Jack Jereb and one each from Adams and Senica. Andy Medina scored a bucket with 36 seconds left to send L-P to the second quarter up 20-0.

“It was just defense,” Adams said about the key to the run. “We got a lot of easy shots based off our defense. We stopped them. We made them take tough shots.

“We just got in their face and did as much as we could. We’ve been talking a lot about help defense. We had a lot of rotations and help and I think that’s what propelled us to that lead.”

The Spartans missed all 10 of their shots in the first quarter and missed a pair of free throws.

“I think we came out aggressive. We did exactly what we wanted to do,” L-P coach John Senica said. “We ran the offense. We attacked. We did everything we’ve been talking about we want to do.

“I think we got lucky as well because they missed a lot of shots and we made a lot of shots. We did what we wanted to do, but we got a little help because they ended up missing some shots.”

While Sycamore struggled to shoot, the Cavs also limited their attempts by crashing the boards. L-P held the Spartans one shot or forced a turnover on 10 of 12 possessions.

“We boarded,” John Senica said. “We’ve been doing a lot of practice on that because we’ve been getting killed on the boards in some previous games. We’ve been working on a lot of rebounding drills.”

Sycamore coach Ethan Franklin said the rough start was “something we could kind of see going into it as far as the demeanor.”

“I thought it was disappointing that we didn’t come out ready to go,” Franklin said. “This is something that we had really prepared for. We knew it was a really good team. We turned it on too late and it’s very hard to come back from a 20-point deficit in someone’s gym. Give credit to L-P. They were hungry and they showed it from the beginning and they executed right away. They put us away early.”

The Cavs never let Sycamore back in the game as they led by at least 17 points the rest of the way. L-P led 33-11 at halftime, 45-25 after three quarters and by as many as 30 in the fourth quarter.

“I told the guys we needed to keep the intensity up, keep doing what we were doing, keep pushing the ball up the floor,” John Senica said. “I told them on the defense end we can’t get complacent because we have a 20-point lead.”

Adams scored a game-high 20 points, while Jereb finished with 11 points for L-P (19-7, 6-2 I8), which has won four games in a row. The Cavs play Sterling (20-7) on Saturday at L-P.

Isaiah Feuerbach and Jake Shipley scored eight points each for Sycamore (10-16, 3-6), which plays Somonauk on Saturday.