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Lake’s Kohler drains winner with assist from Clark
By Rusty Silber | Daily Herald Correspondent
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Published: 11/19/2012 11:00 PM

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Direll Clark is well-known as a sure-handed running back during the football season.

Those sure hands come in handy on the basketball court, too.

In the waning seconds of overtime, he lost the ball and still found a way to assist on the game-winning basket on Monday night.

Jake Kohler got the ball from Clark and beat the buzzer as Lakes edged Barrington 61-59 in the opening game of the Mundelein/Warren boys Thanksgiving tournament at Mundelein.

It was the first season-opening victory for the Eagles since 2007.

On the deciding bucket, Kohler rebounded a Broncos miss, fed Clark and then got the ball back for the finishing touch.

“I grabbed the board, I was going to dribble and and take the last shot,” said Kohler, who finished with a team-high 21 points. “I saw how much time was left on the clock (four seconds). Then I saw Direll up the court, I gave it to him and thought he would take the last-second shot. He lost the ball, like he had butterfingers, but he got the ball over to me.

“I didn’t know how much time was left and wanted to get it out of my hands quickly. I just put as much power as I could into it — I thought I might miss it. Luckily, I put it off the glass and it went in. Then I heard the buzzer go off.”

Clark contributed 18 points, 5 rebounds and 5 steals and Justin Bergeron added 11 points and 6 boards for the Eagles.

“It was one those games where you have a chance to win it, and then you might not be able to pull it off,” Lakes coach Chris Snyder said. “It was back and forth with emotions. For a first game, it was a wild game.

“It was exciting to see how our guys responded the way they did. We could’ve folded after (Barrington) tied it going into the overtime. Our guys were resilient and that was good to see.”

Barrington trailed Lakes 18-7 after the first quarter but regrouped to earn a 26-26 tie at the break as Scott Nelson (12 points) beat the buzzer with short-jumper.

The game was tied 36-36 entering the fourth quarter.

Lakes was up by 2 points at 55-53 until Zach Bart (12 points) made a short jumper that tied the game at the end of regulation and sent it into overtime.

“It’s growing pains, and it’s going to take a little time — everything is going to be work in progress,” Barrington coach Bryan Tucker said. “If we didn’t have the slow start, then who knows what might have happened? The rest of the game, we had to push and expend a lot of energy.

“(Lakes) might of had a little bit more of game experience. They did have some size that we had to adjust too. That might have been the difference. It says a lot about our kids, the way they kept fighting and battling. Even to get the score to force the overtime, that says a lot about their character.”

Brad Zaumseil also led the Broncos with 15 points and 7 rebounds.

Barrington plays Uplift at 5:30 p.m. and Lakes takes on host Mundelein in the next round Tuesday evening.