It took a little while for St.Charles North to get it going on Thursday night, but once the North Stars got rolling, they were unstoppable.
A 23-0 run in the third quarter lifted North to a 70-41 win over Streamwood in its Upstate Eight River home opener. Jake Ludwig had 23 points to lead the North Stars (4-1, 1-0) and Alec Goetz added 11.
North led just 18-17 midway through the second quarter before putting together a 15-3 run to close out the first half up 33-20. Ludwig scored 11 of his points in the quarter, including a pair of three-pointers.
That momentum carried over to the second half as the North Stars knocked down 10-of-15 shots in the third quarter for a 26-point explosion.
“We were just not as intense as I would like to see us in the first half,” North coach Tom Poulin said. “We were not at game speed. It was encouraging the way we pulled it together in the third quarter.
“But we don’t want to fall into the habit of thinking we can just flip a switch and everything turns around. I think this group understands that and knows they need to be ready all 32 minutes.”
During one stretch in the third-quarter run, the North Stars scored 11 points in less than a minute. Ludwig started it with a three. Streamwood then turned the ball over the next four times down the floor and North took advantage with four transition buckets.
“We got a lot more active on the defensive end,” Poulin said. “We started moving our feet and getting our arms out for more deflections.”
Goetz had a pair of threes in the first half and then helped spark the third quarter surge with a couple steals.
“Not sure what was going on at the start,” Goetz said. “We just weren’t focused. We can’t let that happen against any opponent. Coach got on us at halftime and we were able to get it together.”
North hit 10-of-18 three-point attempts and had a 35-19 rebounding advantage.
Streamwood (1-4, 0-1) hung tough early on. A steal and slam dunk from Cole Seger had the Sabres down just one point in the second quarter, but they shot just 10-of-28 the rest of the way and were plagued by defensive lapses.
Jacob Siewert had 14 points to lead Streamwood. Antonio Harris added 12.
“I thought we played real well in the first half,” first-year Streamwood coach Paul Kowalyszyn said. “We were following the game plan. We fronted the post, helped out on the weak side, and closed out on their shooters.
“Then in the second half it all got away from us. That happens with young teams. We’ll keep working to get more consistent. But I am seeing glimpses that we can play, and that’s a good sign.”