By Drake Skleba
For the Bugle 

Redwings fall to Stevenson on Saturday night in Lincolnshire


Last updated 2/24/2020 at 11:39am

On Friday night, the Benet Academy Redwings (21-9) traveled to Arlington Heights to complete their 2019-2020, East Suburban Catholic Conference schedule against rival St. Viator. Trailing 30-20 at the half, the vaunted Redwing defense allowed just 10 Lion points in the second half, that led to the Redwings' 43-40 ESCC victory.

On Saturday night in Lincolnshire, the Redwings were stymied by the state-ranked Stevenson Patriots in a non-conference match-up. Stevenson (24-4), the North Suburban Conference champions, rolled past the Redwings 51-36.

Benet's 6-foot-8, Johns Hopkins University-bound Colin Crothers, was held to just four points and hauled down six rebounds. Redwing 6-foot-3 junior sharp-shooter, Jack Proc, was shut-out. Adding insult to injury, the Redwings only converted on seven of their 19 free throw attempts.

"We just had an off-night," Benet coach Gene Heidkamp said. "Give credit to Stevenson for not letting us do what we normally do on offense. Tonight, even when we would get great looks at the basket, we would miss the shots. There is no excuse for the poor shooting at the free-throw line tonight."

Normally, Stevenson head coach Pat Ambrose's son, Matt and the Patriots' 6-foot-6 senior RJ Holmes are the Patriots top weapons. Matt Ambrose scored 11 points, with three, three-pointers and Holmes was shutdown and held to five points.

The "Redwing-Killer" on Saturday night, was the burly 6-foot-4 Matt Kaznikof, who took home game-scoring honors with 14 points. Kazinkof, buried three shots from beyond the arc, for nine of his game-high 14 points.

Ambrose, scored five of the nine Patriot points in the first quarter, for a 9-4 Stevenson lead.

Kaznikof, buried two of his long-range bombs and scored eight points in the second quarter.

The Redwing hero in Lincolnshire, was junior Sam Hennessey.

The junior sharp-shooter buried a pair of long-range three-pointers to keep the Redwings within 21-16 at the half. Hennessey, buried a third three-pointer in the third quarter, to lead the Redwings with nine points.

"We struggled tonight against a very good Stevenson team," Hennessey said. "I tried to do everything I could for my team tonight. I played tough defense, screened and passed the ball on offense and it felt great to knock down my three, three-pointers."

Kaznikof and Ambrose, took over the game in the third quarter, as the Patriots opened up a 35-25 lead and rolled to the 51-36 victory.

Junior Tyler Vaneekeren, scored eight points and grabbed five rebounds for the 'Wings. Senior Matt Reid, scored four points and hauled down six rebounds.

"This still was a great weekend for us," Heidkamp added. "We picked up the huge ESCC win at St. Viator last night and against a very good Stevenson team, they provided us with a great learning experience. We will get back in the gym and clean a few things up and we will be fine."


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