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Joliet West's #23 Morris Dunnigan goes up for a shot the Crete-Monee defense looks on in the 3rd quarter. Joliet West vs. Crete-Monee varsity boys basketball at Joliet Central High School in Joliet, Illinois, Monday, January 21, 2013. | Joseph P. Meier~
The outcome of Monday’s Crete-Monee vs. Joliet West game at the Joliet Central MLK Day of Hoops extended beyond the win-loss column.
The Warriors and Tigers will be competing in the Class 4A Thornton Sectional, and the winner of Monday’s contest likely could receive a higher seed.
That’s why when the game ended, West coach Luke Yaklich had a big smile on his face and Crete-Monee’s Tom Cappel more of a scowl. The Tigers held off a short-handed Warriors squad 68-63.
“We had been circling this game on the calendar since we left Pontiac (Christmas tournament),” Yaklich said. “It was a big sectional game for us.”
And an entertaining one, despite Crete-Monee playing the majority of the game without Marvie Keith (injury) and Laquon Treadwell (foul trouble).
Keith left the game early in the first quarter after suffering a head injury and never returned.
Treadwell was plagued by foul trouble throughout and fouled out with 4:20 remaining and the Warriors down 59-55.
“I would have liked to have played with a full team,” Cappel said. “This was a big game for us in terms of playoff seeding. We needed it.”
The Warriors (14-5) almost got it.
Tyler Williams had a major hand in keeping Crete-Monee close. His basket from the baseline with 22 seconds remaining brought the Warriors to within 64-63.
Williams finished with a team-high 21 points.
West’s Carl Terrell, however, converted four free throws down the stretch to secure the victory.
“Terrell wants the ball in those situations,” Yaklich said. “We did a great job of executing and getting him the ball in those situations.”
Brandon McCullum led West (11-5) with 19 points, followed by Morris Dunnigan with 18 and Terrell with 11. West converted 23-of-51 field goals, including 6-of-18 from beyond the arc, and was 16-of-23 from the foul line.
Mark Conner complimented Williams’ effort with 20 points for Crete-Monee, 18 coming in the first three quarters. Treadwell was held to six points, but converted an alley-oop pass from Conner into a thunderous dunk in the first half.
Crete-Monee was 24-of-47 from the field and 13-of-18 from the stripe.