KEWANEE -- Dayton Ince is the James Bond of Kewanee basketball.|
Ince doesn't have a license to kill, but he's free to shoot anytime he wants.
Tuesday, Ince had a career night, draining 8 of his 17 3-point tries en route to a career high 32 points as Kewanee (5-2) dropped Geneseo (4-1), 60-49.
When it's good, it's really good, like when he went 5-for-7 in the second half. That came after a stretch of missing five straight treys to end the first half.
"Coach has given me the green light from day one," said Ince. "Even when I'm missing the guys still want me to shoot. Everyone just keeps saying, `keep shooting and find your rhythm.'''
The Leafs weren't able to slow that rhythm in the second half as Ince drained a 3 just 28 seconds into the third quarter and Kewanee never relinquished the lead.
"He's our senior and we expect big things out of him and he really delivered tonight," Kewanee coach Steve Salisbury said. "In the second half, he got a lot of good looks and also got to the free-throw line."
The Boilermakers also did a tremendous job of shutting down Austin Frank. The Geneseo big man had eight points and 10 rebounds in the first half, but was limited to just two free throws and three boards in the second half to finish off his double-double. Frank didn't attempt a field goal in the final 16 minutes.
Jordan Starkey led the Leafs' offense with 19 points, but there was no balance. The Leafs shot over 50-percent from the field, but turned the ball over 23 times, giving the undersized but more aggressive Boilers multiple chances.
"As coaches, we sensed this coming," Geneseo coach Brad Storm said. "We were feeling pretty good about ourselves and we weren't doing things right in practice. These guys need to learn how to handle success."
The Leafs, coming off a 6-19 season, are now 4-1. While they didn't return to last year's form, it was clear when Kewanee got physical that the Leafs didn't punch back. The Boilermakers took 25 free throws, compared to just six from Geneseo.
"We have to do the little things," Storm said. "A lot of the little things we've been doing right we didn't do at all tonight."
The Leafs now travel to Ottawa on Friday in hopes of jumping to the top of the Northern Illinois Big 12 West standings by knocking off the two preseason favorites.Last week, Geneseo beat Sterling handily and wants to prove the beginning of the season wasn't a fluke.
"It would've been nice to beat Kewanee, but we have work to do on Friday," Storm said. "Ottawa is the one we have to get."
For the Boilermakers, they just need to keep shooting, and giving the ball to Ince. Dayton Ince.
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