BOYS BASKETBALL

Looking back: Thornridge wins second straight hoops title

2012-02-23T21:00:00Z 2014-01-20T22:11:52Z Looking back: Thornridge wins second straight hoops titleBy Al Hamnik Times Sportswriter nwitimes.com
February 23, 2012 9:00 pm  • 

Editor's note: This story originally appeared in The Times on March 19, 1972.

CHAMPAIGN | Boyd Batts' record 37 points lifted Thornridge to its 54th straight basketball victory, a 104-69 triumph over overmatched Quincy Central, and its second straight IHSA state championship.

In the consolation contest, Aurora East stopped Peoria Manual, 76-66.

The Falcons, who will be arriving in Dolton at 1:30 p.m. Sunday for an all-city celebration, surged to a 32-point lead at the outset of the second quarter and never looked back.

Batts' 37 topped all scorers. All-American Quinn Buckner, like Batts playing his final game for the Falcons, tallied 28 points. Greg Rose, a junior, pumped in 24.

In all, there were three Finals records broken -- total scoring (173), total points by one team (104) and Batts' 37, a single-game record.

Coach Ron Ferguson, to the dismay of Quincy fans who were among the more than 16,000 who witnessed the rout, left his seniors -- Batts, Buckner and Mike Bonczyk -- in for nearly the entire game.

Committing 21 errors, the Quincy offense was limited to one shot, as the Falcons overpowered the Blue Devils on the boards.

In the first half, Batts collected 25 of Thornridge's 57 points. At one stretch, he hit six straight field goals.

The Falcons' tenacious defense forced the Blue Devils' into numerous second-quarter miscues.

High-scoring Aurora East came off a 10-point deficit in the second half to defeat Peoria Manual for third place.

The Tomcats trailed throughout the first half, which ended with Manual ahead 40-31. Aurora was down 52-42 midway in the third quarter before putting on the winning drive led by Jim Mennecke, Greg Smith and Dave Ideran.

Aurora East totaled 344 points in four games of the tournament to shatter the previous record of 326 set by DuSable of Chicago in 1954.

The Tomcats lost in the semifinals to Quincy 107-96 while Manual dropped a 71-52 decision to undefeated and top-ranked Thornridge.

Greg Smith scored 25 points for the winning Tomcats in the consolation game while Mennecke added 17 and Ideran finished with 13. Scoring honors, however,went to Mike Davis of Manual who finished with 27 points.

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