Oswego East's Kendall Dorsey goes up for the go-ahead basket over Batavia's Luke Horton and Tucker Knox on Saturday, January 26, 2013 at the Ernie Kivisto Hoops Fest at East Aurora High School in Aurora IL. | Terence Guider-Shaw~For Sun-Times Media
Shooting a basketball can be tricky business.
On a night when the shots from the floor wouldn’t fall, Oswego East couldn’t seem to miss a free throw Saturday in the opening game of the Ernie Kivisto Shootout tripleheader at East Aurora.
The Wolves rode a 25-for-27 performance at the line to claim a 58-53 win over Batavia.
“I wish I could tell you we do that all the time, but we’ve had games we’ve lost at the free throw line,” said Oswego East coach Ron Murphy. “It was good for us to be able to do that.”
It was a night of extremes for Wolves’ leading scorer C.J. Vaughan, who made just two of 14 shots from the floor, which helps explain why his team made just 28 percent (15-54) from the floor, including 15 percent (3-20) from beyond the three-point line. He had 11 free throws, though, and finished with 16 points and seven rebounds.
“When you’re a shooter, you’re gonna have nights like that. You’ve just gotta have teammates pick you up,” said senior forward Kendall Dorsey, who did just that for Vaughan by scoring a game-high 19 points.
Dorsey made seven of 12 from the floor, including a 14-footer from the wing with 43.8 seconds remaining that broke a 53-53 tie.
After Nick Craft came up with a steal on the ensuing possession that accounted for the Bulldogs’ 23rd turnover, Dorsey took a pass from Vaughan and drove the baseline for a layup to push the margin to four (57-53) with 18 seconds left.
Vaughan then grabbed a rebound off a missed Batavia shot, got fouled and made one of two free throws with nine second left to account for the final margin. It was the only free throw he missed all night.
“We practice them all the time,” Wolves senior forward Kendall Dorsey said of free throws, “but we usually don’t shoot them this well."
Both teams are now 9-10.
Batavia opened a 13-9 lead after one quarter but then struggled to take care of the ball, fell behind 22-20 at the break and trailed 36-32 after three quarters.
“They did a great job the last three-and-a-half to four minutes creating possessions, which helped since they weren’t shooting that well,” said Batavia coach Jim Nazos, whose team got 16 points from Micah Coffey and 11 from Mike Rueffer.
“We’ve got to take care of the ball (better) and rebound. Otherwise, you have to play to be perfect on defense.”
On a night when the shots from the floor wouldn’t fall, Oswego East rode a 25-for-27 performance at the line to claim a 58-53 win over Batavia Saturday in the opening game of the Ernie Kivisto Shootout tripleheader at East Aurora.