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The student news site of Downers Grove South High School

Blueprint

The student news site of Downers Grove South High School

Blueprint

Proviso East scrapes by Mustangs

Seniors+Justin+Sveiteris%2C+Richard+Gasmen%2C+and+Keon+Maggitt+move+up+the+court+after+a+Proviso+East+basket.
Violeta Dauksaite
Seniors Justin Sveiteris, Richard Gasmen, and Keon Maggitt move up the court after a Proviso East basket.

Despite a spirited effort, the DGS boys varsity basketball team (12-5) fell just short with a score of 66-64 against the visiting Proviso East Pirates (11-8) last Friday.

The opening tipoff landed in the hands of DGS senior guard Will Potter who would end up scoring the first points of the game off of an athletic putback from senior guard Jalen House’s shot.

Overall tenacious defense and physical play defined the first quarter, with Proviso East racking up five fouls to DGS’s one, leaving DGS ahead 17-14. Junior forward Daniel Sveiteris, who knocked down a big three toward the end of the quarter, didn’t feel like the defense was good enough down the stretch.

“The way we have been starting all our runs has been with our defense. I felt like we weren’t playing the style of basketball we usually play. Our defense will be there for a play and our fast pace will get us an easy basket, but on Friday after we scored we didn’t match-up and let the other team score way too easily,” Sveiteris said.

Spotty defense would plague the Mustangs all game, stopping them from scoring for three minutes in the first quarter and giving up nine points in half that time in the second quarter. This streak caused them to lose the lead for the first time (22-21).

At the end of the quarter, Proviso East would enter the half up 35-33; the first place spot for the West Suburban Gold Conference seemingly up in the air for either team to grab.

House would find his way to lead DGS in points by the end of the game, using the transition game to his advantage, but the momentum evidently wasn’t enough; struggles with the Pirates offense was the main issue.

“With stopping teams and them getting on a run it goes back to keeping the high intensity on the defensive end and not taking breaks. When we take breaks, teams go on runs which was seen against Proviso East,” House said.

House would nail a deep go-ahead three that started the Mustangs on a run in the third, that ended up being stifled quickly. Both teams kept the other in check, going blow for blow, staying within eight points of each other for the entire second half. At the end of the third the Mustangs were up 53-49, the battle continuing to stay close.

The Pirates would start the second half with a 8-2 run in the first three and a half minutes, the Mustangs offense sputtering, but the defense clicking well enough to leave it close. Both teams would continue to go blow for blow. At the end of the fourth, the Mustangs climbed out from down six to bring their deficit to two, but with a put-back buzzer beater missed, the Mustangs fell 66-64.

DGS senior guard Jalen House shoots a three over Proviso East senior guard Michael Robinson.

With the loss, DGS fell to 12-4, then lost the next day to Metamora in Peoria, falling to 12-5. They also would lose control of first in their conference, falling to second as Proviso East takes the driver’s seat for now. Despite the difficult weekend, DGS stays motivated with the chance to sweep the season series against rival Hinsdale South this Thursday, Jan. 25.

“We are all super excited to play them again. Who doesn’t like a rivalry game? Knowing we beat them last time by 25, they are for sure going to try a different game plan on Thursday, but thanks to our coaching staff and Blue Team, we’ll be prepared,” Sveiteris said.

South will also face Proviso East again later in the season at Proviso’s gym in Maywood. Despite a difficult loss, they want to keep things as they have all year.

“The mindset going into that game in February is ‘let’s go in there and take care of business,’ which has really been the mindset for every game this year. Everyone just has to do their job and play their role at a high level if we want to keep having the success we’ve been having this season,” House said.

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