Boys Basketball: Marian Catholic outlasts Joliet West
By Bill Harrison For Sun-Times Media December 4, 2012 11:12PM
Updated: January 6, 2013 10:11AM
The common denominator between Joliet West and Marian Catholic entering Tuesday night’s contest was that the only loss each team had came at the hands of Homewood-Flossmoor.
The thing that did separate the two in their first meeting since a 2010 regional was rebounding. And nobody felt the pain of that more than Tigers coach Luke Yaklich after his bigger team lost the rebounding battle and the game 49-44.
“We outrebounded the bigger H-F team the other night but couldn’t do the same against this smaller Marian team,” said Yaklich, whose team lost the battle of the boards 24-16.
The Spartans (6-1) had nine offensive rebounds for 12 second-chance points. They did it in collective fashion with four players — Tyler Ulis, KiJana Crawford, Joshua Cohn, and Kevin Phillips — finishing with four rebounds. Teammate John Oliver led all rebounders with six.
Ulis, with Kansas State coach Bruce Weber in attendance, watching his every move, scored 16 of his game-high 21 points in the second half, including 8-of-8 from the free-throw line, on a night his three-point shot was not falling.
Morris Dunnigan led the Tigers (4-2) with 14 points and five rebounds, while Ryan Modiest added 13 points and Brandon McCullum chipped in 12.
After a 23-all first-half tie, the Spartans took the lead for good behind a 13-2 run. Ulis scored eight of his 10 third-quarter points during the run while Joshua Cohn added a three-pointer during the spurt. Cohn finished with 15 points, including nine in the first half.
“I wasn’t shooting well and Joshua came in and stepped it up,” Ulis said.
The Tigers went on a 9-0 run to pull within to 38-36 early in the fourth quarter but never recovered from a decisive 11-3 run by the Spartans, sparked by six free throws from Ulis and another three by Cohn, his third of the night.
“They outhustled us and deserved the victory,” Yaklich said.