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South Elgin's Matt McClure dribbles up the court as Jacobs senior Nick Ledinsky defends Tuesday. | Michele du Vair~For Sun-Times Media
Jacobs coach Jim Hinkle likes to say there is no such thing as an ugly baby or an ugly win, but he might have to rethink the second part of the adage after Tuesday’s nonconference game at South Elgin.
With the exception of the first few minutes of the first quarter, the Golden Eagles were in a serious offensive funk for most of the night. It just so happened the short-handed Storm had even more trouble scoring in what ended up a 38-26 win for the visitors.
Senior Nick Ledinsky finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds for Jacobs (3-5), which was just happy to escape with its third win in four games after shooting 13-for-43 (30.2 percent) from the field.
“We’ve played South Elgin for four years now, and every single game has been like that,” Ledinsky said. “They like to play at a slow pace, and we take what we can get.”
South Elgin (2-9) saw its losing streak reach eight as it posted its second-lowest scoring output of the season. The Storm shot 23.3 percent (10-for-43) from the field and was 0-for-15 from three-point range.
Darius Wells, South Elgin’s leading scorer, missed his fourth straight game as he continues to rehab an injured left foot. Freshman guard Matt Smith also missed his second straight game and will be out until mid-January after suffering his second concussion in five months in last week’s loss against Lake Park.
The Storm looked totally out of sync early as Ledinsky scored his team’s first seven points to help Jacobs jump out to a 13-1 lead with 2:32 left in the first quarter. The Storm managed only two points in the second quarter and trailed 23-8 at halftime.
Jacobs’ shooting woes kept it from blowing things open as a 34-17 advantage midway through the fourth quarter marked its largest lead of the game. The Storm couldn’t take advantage, though, coming no closer than 12 down in the second half.
“I thought our zone kind of slowed (Jacobs) down, but we weren’t scoring on the other end,” South Elgin coach Chaz Taft said. “Our shots just weren’t falling.”
Ryne Lundy was one bright spot for the Storm as he came off the bench to score a game-high 17 points and grab 10 rebounds. He accounted for all nine of South Elgin’s points in the fourth quarter.
Lake Ojo and Will Schwerdtmann pitched in with seven points apiece for the Eagles. Ojo also contributed eight rebounds.
“I was really happy with our dominance on the glass, and we did do a good job defensively,” Hinkle said. “Although, if there was another team in the state colder than us tonight it was (South Elgin).
“I don’t think the lid came off the peach basket tonight, but that happens, and so you find a way to win when you’re not shooting well.”
JACOBS 38, SOUTH ELGIN 26
Ledinsky 6 1-2 14, Ojo 1 5-8 7, Schwerdtmann 3 0-0 7, Nerja 2 0-1 4, Orange 0 3-4 3, Micel 1 0-1 2, Billings 0 1-2 1, Berndt 0 0-2 0. Totals 13 10-20 38.
South Elgin (2-9)
Lundy 6 5-6 17, Cager 1 0-0 2, McClure 1 0-0 2, Grant 1 0-2 2, Gibadlo 1 0-0 2, Padron 0 1-2 1. Totals 10 6-10 26.
Jacobs 13 10 6 9 -- 38
South Elgin 6 2 9 9 -- 26
Three-point goals – Jacobs: 2 (Ledinsky, Schwertmann). SE: None. Fouled out – None.