An opposing coach shouted “Shooter’’ when the ball was delivered to Reed-Custer’s Brent Headrick late in the third quarter.
The 6-foot-4 sophomore connected from just beyond the top of the key to help stymie a Southland College Prep rally and keep Reed-Custer headed toward an 85-64 semifinal win Wednesday night at the Class 2A Wilmington Regional.
After his three-pointer gave Reed-Custer a 54-45 lead, Headrick had two more rebounds and a steal before the end of the third quarter and grabbed five more boards in the fourth quarter.
“I try and get as many steals and tips as I can to help the team win,’’ said Headrick, downplaying his versatility. “It’s more about the team.’’
Southland closed the gap to 56-52 early in the fourth quarter before Reed-Custer was able to pull away.
“We allowed their quickness to bother us,’’ Reed-Custer coach Mark Porter said. “We didn’t stay in front of them.’’
Travis Schoonover hit a three-pointer to put Reed-Custer ahead 69-60 with 3:25 to play. Logan Zavala made two free throws and a three-point play by Schoonover raised the lead to 74-60. Then it was up to the defense.
“We had good traps and held them to bad shots,’’ Schoonover said.
The sophomore guard led Reed-Custer (17-11) with 26 points, Headrick scored 19, Tyler Allen had 11 and Austin Hauck added 10.
“They’ve been our two leading scorers all year,’’ Porter said of Schoonover and Headrick. “We’ve got some other good players, but Travis and Brent kind of rose to the top.’’
Reed-Custer made 13-of-16 free throws in the fourth quarter.
DaJean Kelly led Southland (4-12), a Richton Park charter school, with 18 points and Ermahn Oduro-Kwarten had 14.
“In terms of executing, we needed to be a little more patient and trust their defensive mechanisms,’’ Southland coach Daryll Lacey said. “We turned the ball over too much down the stretch.’’
Reed-Custer advanced to Friday’s title game to face Beecher, a 49-42 winner over Momence.