GAMER: PROSPECT 60, GBN 39
Glenbrook North head coach Dave Weber came away from the game totally impressed … with Prospect.
The Knights stormed the castle, if you will, in a boys basketball Class 4A regional semifinal at New Trier High School on Feb. 27. The Mid-Suburban League East champs (22-5, 10-0), who received the seventh seed in the Maine East Sectional, built an early 13-4 advantage and eventually cruised to 60-39 victory over the Spartans, who finished the 2017-18 campaign with a 14-13 record.
“That’s a great team,” said Weber. “We were chasing them all night.
“I think they would’ve been the No. 1 seed in the [Lake Zurich Sectional],” he added.
The coach figured it would be an uphill climb against the Knights, who defeated his Spartans 49-33 in a non-conference game on Feb. 13.
Prospect was coming off a 54-44 win over Barrington in the MSL championship game on Feb. 21.
“We needed to be much more focused tonight,” Weber said.
February was a struggle for GBN. The Spartans, who opened the season 7-0, lost six of their last seven games.
Max Knebelkamp turned in another nice game for GBN. The underrated 6-foot senior guard dropped in a team-high nine points to go along with four rebounds and two assists.
“He’s quick. Athletic,” said Weber. “With his ability to drive the lane, he’s a guy who makes things happen for us.”
GBN’s Mike Roane got off to a good start. The senior center posted up and scored down low on his first two touches of the game.
He also tallied four points in the second half to finish the game with eight points.
“He’s an improved player,” said Weber. “He’s a high-energy guy. He’s intense. Plays with a lot of enthusiasm.”
Senior forward Kellen Witherell, a three-year starter on varsity, came up with eight points, three rebounds and four blocks, while junior guard-forward Brian Johnson had six points and four rebounds.
Senior Evan Barnes, who earned all-CSL North recognition along with Witherell, had a tough night.
“He’s had the flu, which is no excuse,” said Weber, who watched his standout guard finish the game with zero points. “But I give him a lot of credit for even playing tonight.
“We’re a lot better team, when he’s hitting his shots,” the coach added.
Meanwhile, Prospect’s Johnny Czeslawski (19 points) made one shot after another. The senior guard opened the second half by nailing three-pointers on four of his team’s first five possessions. He had five threes for the game.
Jon Kreidler (12 points) and David Swedura (11 points) also were hot shooters for the Knights, who will meet host New Trier in the regional title game on March 2 (7 p.m.). Second-seeded NT topped Wheeling 57-43 in the other semifinal game.