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`May Day:' UT holds off Alleman rally


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Posted Online: Feb. 08, 2013, 11:34 pm
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By Steve Tappa, stappa@qconline.com
United Township's Trevor May had seen enough.

A nine-game losing streak. Growing pains all season. A second-half comeback by Alleman.

The only returning starter from last season's Panthers did something about all of that Friday night, erupting for 13 of his team-best 15 points in the fourth quarter to help the hosts hold off the Pioneers, 57-47.

The Western Big 6 Conference boys' basketball win at East Moline's Panther Den was the second this season over Alleman (6-16, 1-7) by UT (4-19, 2-6), breaking a last-place league tie between the two.

"We've been so close so many times this season, it was about time we pulled it off,'' May said, pointing to a series of near-misses last month.

"It's been a frustrating season, but we have a group of guys who don't like to lose and that keep coming back to work hard every day to get better and tonight it finally paid off.''

The junior made sure that happened with a fourth-quarter flurry to answer Alleman's rally from a 16-point, second-half deficit.

Behind senior guard Adam Hoogerwerf and his game-high 22 points, the depleted Pioneers clawed back to within two points with 5 1/2 minutes remaining.

That's when May hit a pair of 3-pointers, giving the Panthers just enough cushion on a night when UT inducted its 1970 boys' basketball state runner-up into the school's Hall of Fame.

"Both of them came on set plays,'' May said. "I came off screens and they sagged off me. They didn't want me to get to the basket, so I just took the open looks. Those gave us the confidence we could win.''

UT coach Marc Polite said May was an appropriate hero for the Panthers.

"Trevor has been huge in this stretch, when we started playing good basketball,'' Polite said. "He's the soul of our group, taking care of the ball and playing solidly on defense. He can make shots. He's worked real hard at becoming consistent, and it finally paid off tonight.''

The setback was Alleman's seventh straight without the injured senior duo of Dan Cutkomp and John Tracey. The Pioneers also were missing season-starters Alec Diab (flu) and Joey Mihm (ineligible) this weekend.

Despite the short bench, the Pioneers were not short on effort, rallying from a game-starting 13-0 run by the Panthers.

"We had a handful of kids who haven't seen much playing time, and we started very tentative,'' Alleman coach Pat Rangel said. "But we played hard, and really stepped up in the second half and made UT beat us. They had to knock down some shots and they did.''

Besides Hoogerwerf, Rangel was most pleased with first-time varsity starter Aaron Murray, who added 10 points and a game-high 8 rebounds.

Keegan Wenskunas and Evan Spurgetis also had nine points each for UT.

"We came up on the short end,'' Rangel said, "but it's been awhile since we've seen that kind of intensity and group effort.''



















 



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  Today is Monday, Sept. 22, the 265th day of 2014. There are 100 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The board of education has granted Thursday as a holiday for the children, with the expectation that parents who desire to have their children attend the Scott County Fair will do so on that day and save irregularity the rest of the week.
1889 -- 125 years ago: The guard fence around the new cement walk at the Harper House has been removed. The blocks are diamond shape, alternating in black and white.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The Rev. R.B. Williams, former pastor of the First Methodist Church, Rock Island, was named superintendent of the Rock Island District.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Abnormally high temperatures and lack of rainfall in Illinois during the past week have speeded maturing of corn and soybean crops.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Installation of a new television system in St. Anthony's Hospital, which includes a closed circuit channel as well as the three regular Quad-Cities channels, has been completed and now is in operation.
1989 -- 25 years ago: When the new Moline High School was built in 1958, along with it were plans to construct a football field in the bowl near 34th Street on the campus. Wednesday afternoon, more than 30 years later, the Moline Board of Education Athletic Board sent the ball rolling toward the possible construction of that field by asking superintendent Richard Hennigan to take to the board of education a proposal to hire a consultant.






(More History)