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Waubonsie Valley's Bryan Jefferson is fouled by Naperville Central's Matt Auld on his way to the basket on Tuesday, January 8, 2013, at Waubonsie Valley. | Jeff Cagle~For Sun-Times Media
Opposing teams seeing Waubonsie Valley know Jared Brownridge is going to get his points.
It’s stopping the Warriors’ other weapons that’s the trick.
Receiving a game-high 32 points from the Santa Clara-bound Brownridge, Waubonsie Valley used a 28-point fourth quarter to pull out a 74-66 victory over No. 18 Naperville Central Tuesday night in Aurora.
Seeing Naperville Central (10-5) end the third on a 16-5 run to take a three-point lead into the game’s final quarter, the Warriors responded by scoring the first 11 points in the fourth.
“I think what happened there was we kinda let our guard down a little bit (at the end of the third quarter) and you can’t do that against a good team,” Waubonsie Valley coach Steve Weemer said. “I mean, they’re rated 18th in the Sun-Times for a reason. They’re good and they shoot the ball tremendous.”
Waubonsie Valley (11-6) got 24 points and 13 rebounds from senior forward Bryan Jefferson to help aid Brownridge and the rest of its offense.
Knowing the vast attention Brownridge receives, the 6-foot-7 Jefferson was up to the task in putting forth a career night.
“Me scoring those points definitely gives (Brownridge) relief and team relief knowing that we’re versatile and that,” he said. “(Brownridge) isn’t the only one who can score because I know I’m capable of doing that. So if we can help him on that and play team defense, that’s how we can get our victories.”
Going on the impressive run to conclude the third by taking the ball to the basket, Naperville Central coach Pete Kramer thought his team got rattled as it got outscored 28-17 during the fourth while trying to hit perimeter shots.
“That’s what I just told them (in the locker room). We were up by three and we kind of fell apart after we regained the lead,” Kramer said. “That’s surprising because we haven’t done that a whole lot. I’ll take the blame, too, on this game. We could have done some different things.”
Senior Mike Blaszczyk’s team-high 24 points, including contributing 10 in the third quarter to help the Redhawks get some traction, kept the Redhawks in the game, but they just couldn’t stop the duo of Brownridge or Jefferson.
“Shoot, I mean that was (the turning point of the game). Bryan really stepped up and I was really proud of his efforts,” Weemer said. “And some other guys (stepped up), like Jack Cordes (who) got some big rebounds and Jay Dehaan came in and made a nice, driving layup. Matt Gialamas did the same thing, and so other guys stepped up.
“When Jared and Bryan have been there, other guys got to continue to step up. But Bryan was huge (Tuesday) night. I mean, (turning in a) double-double like that. I thought Bryan really played well in the second half.”
Erupting for 14 points in the game’s opening eight minutes, including hitting on four 3-pointers, Brownridge got off to a lightning quick start for the Warriors.
But holding him to just two points in the second quarter, the Redhawks went into halftime trailing just 34-30 by virtue of getting 10 first-half points from junior center Nick Czarnowski and hitting on five treys as a team in the first half.
While Blaszczyk led the Redhawks with his 24 points, Czarnowski finished with a double-double with 15 points and 14 rebounds.