Area Roundup: Morris boys basketball tops previously unbeaten Seneca

Morris races out to 18-5 first-quarter lead in victory

Morris' Gage Phillips (left), shown here during a game against Coal City, scored 15 points in a 63-42 win over Ottawa on Wednesday.

SENECA – The Morris boys basketball team improved to 4-1 on the year Tuesday with a 61-52 win over previously unbeaten Seneca.

Morris got off to a hot start, taking an 18-5 lead at the end of the first quarter and stretching the advantage to 33-17 at halftime, before Seneca (3-1) cut it to 47-36 at the end of the third quarter.

Zach Romak led Morris with 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the field. Gage Phillips followed with 11 points, while Henry Hansen (4 of 4 FG) and Jonah Williams (3 of 3 FG, 3 of 3 FT) both scored nine points. A.J. Zweeres added eight points for Morris, while Cam Hatcher scored four and Aidan Romak and Grayson Weber each had two points.

Seneca was led by Noah Quigley and Carter Ellis with 13 points each, while Paxton Giertz added 10.

“We need to learn to start games much, much more aggressive defensively,” Seneca coach Russ Witte said. “Morris dictated the physicality, and we didn’t respond until the second half.

“We cut the lead a couple times to five points but couldn’t get over the hump. It was great to see the kids respond the second half, though. We learned a lot about how to play the game tonight.”

Boys basketball

St. Anne 53, Gardner-South Wilmington 42: GSW dropped its River Valley Conference opener, falling behind, 18-12, at the end of the first quarter. Cale Halpin led the Panthers (1-4, 0-1) with 16 points, while Bennett Grant scored 10 points, Garrett Grant scored seven, and Gabe McHugh added six.

Minooka 70, Oswego 48: Ricky Hill led Minooka with 29 points in the Southwest Prairie Conference win, while Nick Andreano scored 12, and Adrian Manning added seven.

Girls basketball

Seneca 47, Reed-Custer 30: At Braidwood, the Fighting Irish notched the comfortable road win, leading 20-1 after one quarter. Kennedy Hartwig scored 16 points, while Cassia Buchanan and Emma Smith put in eight points apiece for Seneca (5-2).