Rafferty double-double paces Hinsdale Central past Lyons
Hinsdale, 02/09/13--Lyons Township's Sam Cybulski tries to block Hinsdale Central's Rigas Pappas' shot. Hinsdale Central High School hosted Lyons Township High School in boys basketball Saturday afternoon. | Jon Langham~for Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 18, 2013 4:35PM
HINSDALE — With 48 seconds off the clock in the fourth quarter on Saturday evening, Sam Cybulski of Lyons and Hinsdale Central’s Brian Owens had to be separated.
The two players had been jawing back and forth all game, and as the final period began, a hard foul by Owens forced the refs to step in. Both players went back to their respective benches with scowling grins on their face, but in the end, it was the Red Devils who had the last laugh.
The dustup came in the midst of a 15-6 run by the host Red Devils, who took control of the game and secured a 56-43 victory with a strong second half performance.
Leading the way for Hinsdale Central during its strong run — and all game — was sophomore big man Matt Rafferty, who finished with 26 points and 10 rebounds. That included 10 points during the crucial stretch, when the Red Devils turned what had been a three-point lead into a 12-point advantage.
“We really had to just focus on getting stops,” Red Devils coach Nick Latorre said. “We got them in a little bit of foul trouble defensively and we just needed to be smarter defensively.”
Rafferty agreed: “We knew we had to lock down and be tough on defense. And that’s exactly what we did. It all starts on the defensive end, and then we were able to get some baskets on offense”
Hinsdale Central (16-5, 9-1 WSC Silver) held just a four-point lead at halftime, but made it a point to feed the post more often in the second half. That led to both easy baskets and trips to the free-throw line. The Red Devils were also able to get several extra possessions from the 10 offensive rebounds they collected.
“Because we had a size advantage, we knew we could go to the boards and get some easy one,” Rafferty said.
Lyons (11-13, 3-8) had three players who scored in double figures, led by Christopher O’Reilly and Chris Hester, who had 12 points apiece.