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Boilers heat up at Princeton

PRINCETON — Jesse Brandt knew the numbers would not be good ones when he reviewed his stat sheet following his Princeton Tigers Three Rivers South basketball contest with Kewanee Tuesday night at Prouty Gym.

“Thirty-one turnovers and 89 points. That’s not good,” said the Tiger coach.

Those two numbers added up to an 89-55 Boilermaker win at the Tigers’ expense.

“The press didn’t hurt us the first half. The halfcourt we turned it over. The second half we turned it over every where,” Brandt said.

The Tigers (4-17, 2-6) enjoyed a good start, giving up the first basket of the night to the boys in black, but then scoring nine out of the next 11 points. J.J. Vaccaro and Zach Hicks hit back-to-back threes, Zach Andersen scored on a two and Garrett Duffin added a free throw to make it 9-4.

“They’ve got Rockridge Friday, and I told (the Tigers) we might catch them looking ahead. We had a nice start, but then didn’t score for the last three or four minutes and they went on a run,” he said

Kewanee (16-4, 7-1) outscored the Tigers 18-2 the rest of the first quarter to go up 22-12 at quarter’s end.

Kewanee sophomore standout Donovan Walker opened the second quarter with a three and a slam dunk and Dalton Nuding added a layup to quickly make it 30-15.

Down 41-27 at the half, the Tigers closed within 43-33 early in the third quarter on hoops by Vaccaro and Duffin. They never got any closer than that, the Boilers warming up in a hurry to take a 67-43 lead by the end of the third quarter.

“We made a run to start the quarter, got a couple of turnovers, got a couple of shots, but we just turned it over multiple times in a row and they got run-outs and layups,” Brandt said.

Brandt said it was good to see Vaccaro come through with 19 points. Duffin added 11 points.

“He shot the ball well, which was good to see,” Brandt said of Vaccaro, his senior point guard. “He’s had a couple of good practices lately and been more of himself lately. If we can get Garret back to where he was a couple weeks ago we can have a good 1-2 punch.”

The Boilers rode the scoring of Walker (24) and Nuding (22) who are as good of a 1-2 punch around. Brandt said Walker is “long and athletic and knows basketball. He doesn’t try to do too much.”

• Notes: Kewanee won the sophomore game 55-45. Skye Behrends led the Kittens with 13 points and Jake Reinhardt added 11. ... PHS will host St. Bede Friday for Pink Night, celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness.

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