By Drake Skleba
For the Bugle 

Raiders "Three Amigos" lead Bolingbrook blitz of Leo at Evergreen Park's Sunday Showcase


Last updated 2/20/2020 at 12:08am

In the final game of Evergreen Park High School's Sunday Showcase, Bolingbrook took on Leo (15-14) of Chicago.

The five-game Sunday high school basketball showcase was presented by Evergreen Park High School's head basketball coach Paul Flannigan. Flannigan's Mustangs defeated Lincoln-Way West, 75-64 in the showcase's first game.

With Bolingbrook (23-5) leading Leo 27-23 with just three minutes before halftime, the Raiders and their 'Three Amigos' turned the switch on and put this one away.

Three point bombs from Alijah Nelson and Elon University-bound Darius Burford gave the Raiders a 33-23 lead. Burford, along with junior Isaiah Stafford and junior Kai Evans make up the Raiders three amigos.

Stafford hit a free throw for a 34-23 Raider lead and then initiate a Raider dunkfest to close out the half.

Stafford's first steal set up a monster slam for Evans. Stafford picked up another steal, which would lead to another monster slam for Evans. A third Stafford steal, led to a rim-rattling slam for Burford to close out the half with a 40-23 Raider lead.

Stafford (10 points, seven steals, five rebounds, five assists), scored nine points in the third quarter as the Raiders scored 29 points and opened up a 69-42 lead after three quarters. The Raiders initiated the 30-point running clock in the fourth quarter and cruised to the 77-55 victory.

"I was really able to take the ball away from Leo's guards," Stafford said. "When we get on a roll like that, there isn't anyone in the state that can play with us. As I have said before our practices are like this. That is why we have so many assists on our baskets, because we know where everyone is at all times."

Burford scored a game-high 26 points, hauled down seven rebounds, handed out six assists and picked up two steals.

"We knew we were the better team tonight and we were waiting for that spark," Burford said. "One of us lights it up and then all five of us turn on and we are impossible to stop."

Evans scored 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds and handed out a pair of assists.

"We have the best guards in the state, which makes everything happen for us," Evans said. "We get on these runs and we are unstoppable. Also coach (rob) Brost and the staff have us so well-prepared for our opponents that is why we have won 23 games this season."

The 'Three Amigos' scored 54 points, hauled down 22 rebounds, picked up nine steals and handed out 14 assists between them.

"One of my assistants mentioned with three minutes remaining in the half, that we had yet to have one of our patented big runs," Bolingbrook Brost said. "He was answered with 13-0 run to close out the half.

"We continued to roll in the second half and opened up the 35-point lead. When we get on a run like that, we are very hard to beat. That's what we expect every night from Darius, Kai and Isaiah. We graduated seven of our first eight players from last years team. We never dreamed we would be this good at this time. Credit goes out to the kids for their hard work."


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