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When a willingness to rebound kicked in during the second quarter and carried over into the third, Joliet Central was on its way.
Central outrebounded Sandburg 26-9 in the middle periods and slowly pulled away in the fourth Thursday night to a 62-45 SouthWest Suburban Blue home victory.
“We want everybody to rebound because the ball can come to anybody,” Central guard Jonah Coble said. “The ball doesn’t come to just one person so we like to get everybody on the glass.”
And in the scorebook.
Ten players scored for Central (6-1, 1-1), led by Coble with 15 points. Jason McNear (nine points), Antonio Dyson (eight), William Autman (seven), Jailen Jones (six) and Jarvis Northington (six) all got involved.
Dyson led the parade to the glass with 11 rebounds, Coble had eight and Autman and Northington each grabbed seven boards.
Not having foul trouble played a key part in the team rebounding.
“He [Coble] got in foul trouble at Bolingbrook and he said to me here ‘Coach, I’m not going to get a single foul in the first half,’ and he didn’t,” Central coach Jeff Corcoran said. “He’s been starting slow as of late, but he just pecks away at it. Gets his looks, attacks the rim and does what he’s supposed to.”
Sandburg (3-3, 1-1) led 8-2 early and 13-6 after one quarter before rebounding and depth took over for Central. Eight players had scored for the Steelmen by halftime, led by McNear and Jerry Gillespie with five points each off the bench.
“We’ve got a pretty good bench,” Coble said. “They can come in the game when the starters aren’t doing what we’re supposed to do. We want to get everybody involved in the game.”
Central was ahead 25-21 at halftime and 46-39 going into the fourth quarter. The Steelmen had an 8-2 run to start the final period, including back-to-back transition layups by Northington and McNear.
Five Central players had baskets in the final quarter while the Steelmen held Sandburg to six fourth-quarter points.
“Any given night it’s going to be somebody else potentially,’’ Corcoran said. “We just go with what works.”
Sandburg center Niko Cahue scored a game-high 16 points, but only five in the second half. Niko Kogionis finished with 12 points, all three-pointers.
“We did a horrible job on the boards,” Sandburg coach Todd Allen said. “All the 50-50 balls they got. Even though we had a size advantage, they outquicked us, outjumped us.
“When you don’t put a body on someone, that’s what happens.”