The Sterling boys basketball team clinched at least a share of its third straight NIB-12 West title with a road win Friday night, beating LaSalle-Peru 60-42.
Tyler Willman led the way with 14 points for the Golden Warriors, while Micah Kendrick and Marquez Williams added nine points apiece. Sean Gingrich scored seven, and Aidan Shore chipped in six.
Dixon 65, Byron 46: The Dukes outscored the Tigers 27-14 in the third quarter and 17-6 in the fourth quarter to rally from a 26-21 halftime deficit for a Big Northern road win.
Derian Duncan scored 21 points, Oscar Van Sickle hit five 3-pointers and finished with 18 points, and Beau Bailey added 13 points for Dixon. Duncan and Bailey each hot three 3s, and Payton Lawrence added two more as the Dukes hit 13 3s to Byron’s three.
Anthony Eddy paced the Tigers with 18 points.
Riverdale 54, Erie 53: Rams junior Brett Murphy scored 26 points, including the two game-winning free throws with 2.4 seconds left as the Cardinals fell short in a TRAC West game at home.
Josh Hammer and Kyle Stover scored 17 points apiece to pace Erie, with Stover hitting five 3-pointers and Hammer finishing 11-for-14 at the free-throw line. The Cardinals turned a 26-22 halftime deficit into a 43-40 lead after three quarters before coming up just short.
AFC 61, Pecatonica 51: The Raiders picked up an NUIC East home win behind 23 points from Adam Hart and 19 more from Caleb Drew.
Both were clutch at the free throw line, with Hart shooting 9-for-11 and Drew 9-for-10.
AFC trailed 43-39 heading into the final quarter, then scored 22 points in the fourth to rally back for the win.
Sterling finishes season at state: The Golden Warriors rolled a 4,943 in the first two rounds of the IHSA state meet Friday at the Cherry Bowl in Rockford, and did not qualify for Day 2.
The top 12 teams and top 30 individuals not on those teams all advanced to the third and fourth rounds, held today. The 12th-place team after Day 1 was Lincoln-Way West, and its 5,562 pinfall was 619 ahead of Sterling.
Individually, freshman Grace Schultz led the Warriors with a 1,053, while classmate Olivia Zinanni was next with a 1,020. Junior Kyleigh Glazier’s 1,013 six-game series included Sterling’s high game of 244, while sophomore Zoey Paone rolled a 963.
Senior Alivia Salmon finished with a 438 series in the first round, then freshman Kylie Bresley (345) rolled the first two games of the second round before senior Jocie Willett closed out her career with a 111 in the final game of the day.
The final individual qualifier was Collinsville’s Hailey Gardner, whose 1,123 pinfall left Schultz 70 pins short of advancing.
Defending state champion Harlem leads after Day 1 with a 6,153, 198 pins ahead of second-place Schaumburg – which had the top individual after the first two rounds in junior Kylie Frick with a 1,346, two pins better than second-place Abby Gray of Belleville East.
Highland 79, Sauk Valley 61: The Skyhawks struggled shooting the ball all night Thursday, and lost an Arrowhead Conference contest in Freeport.
Anthony Martinez had 12 points to lead Sauk, which shot 34 percent (24-for-70) from the field – including 29 percent (11-for-38) in the second half. Riley Mehrens, Trevon Adams and Montel Brown added nine points each, with Adams grabbing five rebounds and dishing three assists.
Mehrens also had three assists, and Brown finished with four rebounds.