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Emmanuel January came off the bench and scored 20 points to help spark North Chicago to a 69-65 win over Farragut in the MLK Dream Shootout Sunday night.
January came up with a steal at mid court and converted it into a layup to give the Warhawks a 63-59 lead with 1:16 in the game.
“They kept running a play called 44, where they would pass the ball to the wing,” January said of the steal. “I heard them call it out again, read it, made the steal and got the layup.”
The senior reserve player would also sink a pair of free throws with 12 seconds left to account for the final tally.
The two teams would trade buckets and free throws throughout most of the team game. North Chicago (19-1) built a five-point lead on two different occasions for its largest lead of the game, while Farragut managed a four-point lead once for its largest cushion.
JaVairius Amos-Mays was fouled on a three-point shot and sank all three of the freebies to give North Chicago a 54-53 lead with 5:00 to play in the game. The lead change was the 11th and final lead change of the game. Amos-Mays finished the game with a game-high 25 points.
“Like I told him yesterday, if he wants to be an all-state player he has to want the ball in his hands when the game is on the line and he came through once again tonight,” North Chicago coach Gerald Coleman said of Amos-Mays. “A lot of these guys were on the varsity last season so they all know what it’s all about in the pressure situations.”
The win for the Warhawks was their second nail biter in the last two nights after a triple overtime win over St. Ignatius on Saturday night.
“That’s why we play down there (MLK) because we like the competition,” Coleman said. “It’s just some solid basketball that prepares us for later on in the season.”
Sire Carroll (19) and Ashawn Jones (16) combined to score 35 points in the loss for Farragut (9-6).
North Chicago finished the game 25-35 from the free throw line. A total of 41 fouls were called in the battle and the two teams combined to shoot 55 free throws.