Anthony Rehayem knew he had to keep his head up.
Redemption found Rehayem, a senior, who moments earlier just avoided a five-second call while inbounding the ball only to turn it over seconds later, allowing Kendall Holbert and Glenbard North to tie the game.
Given a chance to put his mistake behind him, Rehayem’s three-pointer as time expired put the finishing touches on host Naperville North’s 49-46 upset victory Friday night over Glenbard North in the DuPage Valley Conference.
Rehayem, who finished with 12 points after his game-winning triple, was one of three Huskies to score in double figures, along with getting a team-high 15 from sophomore Jelani McClain and 11 from senior Jayson Winick — who sank five free throws from Winick late in the game.
“Obviously, we didn’t have a timeout, so you have to throw the ball in,” Rehayem said. “All I was trying to do was throw it off the guy’s leg and he opened his legs up and it went right through, so they got the (Holbert) layup.
“It went through my mind, ‘I just threw the game away.’ I knew I had to make up for it. … Everyone collapsed into the middle on (senior Ashton Elston) and he kicked it out for a three. Luckily, I hit it.”
Glenbard North (13-5, 6-2) entered the fourth quarter with a 35-32 lead, thanks in large part to the efforts of Chip Flanigan, setting the stage for a crazy last eight minutes.
Neither team led by more than four points during the fourth and the quarter featured five ties and five lead changes.
“There was a lot of crashing the boards, lot of offensive rebounds that could have gone either way,” Glenbard North coach Joe Larson said. “Lot of good plays. Some missed shots there. However, in a fourth quarter like that, you’re going to be in games like that down the stretch and this is a kind of game you have to learn some things from.”
Naperville North (10-8, 4-4 DuPage Valley) gutted it out in a team effort that continues to typify the program.
“I think that shows a little bit about our kids. Our kids have been going through some hard knocks and losing some close games,” Huskies coach Jeff Powers said. “For them to finally get a close game and win it, that’s a testament to their character.”
In a first half highlighted by runs from both teams, McClain’s basket just inside the three-point line to beat the second-quarter buzzer gave the Huskies a 23-22 halftime lead.
The Panthers had raced out to a quick 15-8 lead late in the first, promoting a timeout before the Huskies immediately countered with an 11-0 run to take a 19-15 lead.
Flanigan finished with a game-high 19 points for the Panthers.