IL Boys 4A Third Place: Bloom vs Rockford Auburn
March 17, 2012
Peoria — Both teams come in to this game a little short of playing for the Boys Class 4A title. Bloom lost to top ranked Simeon, while Rockford Auburn lost to Proviso East.
The Blazing Trojans fell short, 57-46, against Rock Auburn in the third place (consolation) game at Carver Arena.
“The slow start definitely cost us,’’ Bloom coach Jasper Williams said. ‘‘We were back on our heels all day.’’
In the first half Bloom shot 2-for-11 from the field, but only trailed 8 points at the half (28-20). But they had a bigger problem, Wichita State recruit Fred VanFleet of Rockford Auburn. He was explosive on both ends of the court and finished the night with 21 points and 5 assists.
Bloom made one more run in the fourth quarter to cut their lead down to 49-42 that included a basket by Donald Moore with 2:43 remaining, but this proved not enough.
‘‘That was not Bloom you saw out there,’’ Williams said. ‘‘We pride ourselves on tough defense and team-play, and we were just not focused today at all.’’
Donald Moore, the team’s leading scorer and captain, echoed his coach’s sentiments. ‘‘It’s not the way we wanted to finish,’’ Moore said. ‘‘We just couldn’t get our heads into the game and that’s not how we were taught to play.’’
Moore finished the game with 16 points, and teammate Dejahown Freeman contributed nine.
Auburn coach Bryan Ott said his team played with a chip on their shoulder. ‘‘We lost twice to Proviso East and we wanted to leave here on a positive note,” Ott said. ‘‘We know how people view us and we used that as motivation to beat a very good Bloom team.’’
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