Glenbard West takes down St. Charles North

In 16 years of watching film of upcoming opponents, St. Charles North coach Tom Poulin has never seen anything quite like Glenbard West.

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After Glenbard West’s Caden Pierce, left, got pulled down on a hard foul, Ryan Renfro, right, gives him a hand up

After Glenbard West’s Caden Pierce, left, got pulled down on a hard foul, Ryan Renfro, right, gives him a hand up

Allen Cunningham/For the Sun-Times

In 16 years of watching film of upcoming opponents, St. Charles North coach Tom Poulin has never seen anything quite like Glenbard West.

“I’m not sure I’ve scouted a better team,” Poulin said. “Maybe there have been better teams out there, but I haven’t scouted them.

“It’s not just the length, not just the size but the unselfishness, the basketball IQ. They’re very impressive.”

The No. 1 Hilltoppers did nothing to change Poulin’s mind or anyone else’s on Saturday evening. Before a standing-room-only home crowd and a TV audience, Glenbard West spotted St. Charles North an early lead before shifting into high gear and cruising to a 62-30 win.

When Brady Rasso hit a three-pointer from the left wing with 6:43 left in the second quarter, the North Stars led 14-13. The Hilltoppers ran off the next 11 points and finished the half on a 19-3 run to go ahead 32-17.

It was 51-25 after three quarters and 60-25 when Glenbard West’s starters left the game with 6:05 remaining,

Two stats illustrate why the Hilltoppers are 23-0. In the last minute of the first half, three of them — Caden Pierce, Paxton Warden and Braden Huff — blocked a North Stars shot. And four of them shared the team scoring lead at halftime with seven points each: Pierce, Warden, Huff and Bobby Durkin.

When opponents don’t know who to attack offensively or who to try to control defensively, it’s going to be a long night.

That was the case for other reasons too on Saturday. It was a TV game, which meant longer-than-usual timeouts, and the tip was delayed when the previous game in Glenbard West’s Pack the Place event — the Hilltoppers girls’ loss to Schaumburg — went to overtime.

But nothing could take the Hilltoppers’ focus off the task in front of them.

The defensive numbers were no accident, according to Pierce.

“It was a game where our main focus was just to try to get as many tips, deflections, steals as we could,” he said. “We knew that St. Charles North is a great defensive team. So we knew it was going to be hard to score in the halfcourt. We just tried to get the ball out in transition with our defense causing that. I think we did a good job of that.”

Pierce finished with 16 points, five steals, five rebounds and a block. Durkin had 13 points and seven rebounds, Huff had 13 points, six rebounds, two blocks and a steal, and Warden added 11 points, four rebounds, two steals and a block. Ryan Renfro, West’s fifth starter, had seven points and six rebounds.

“Those steals got us energy throughout the entire game,” Warden said.

On the offensive side, the balance shows that the Hilltopers aren’t much concerned about who scores the points as long as someone does.

“Whenever we get a pass, we look ahead to the next person,” Warden said, “We’re all unselfish players and look for other people to shoot as well.”

Max Love led the North Stars (11-11) with 11 points and Ethan Marlowe finished with nine. North had seven three-pointers and just three two-point baskets along with three free throws.

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