Lessons come in many forms. And Yorks David Cohn showed that he learned his quite well.
Benched in the second half of the Dukes game last Wednesday, the Colorado State recruit scored 25 points Saturday to lead the York past Waubonsie Valley 67-49 in the finals of the Ed Molitor Thanksgiving Classic in Palatine.
It was a complete team win, said Cohn, named MVP of the tournament. Charlie Rose did a great job of hitting the 3 and the big men did their job.
First-year coach Vince Doran, who took over this year after being at Hinsdale South, sent a message with Wednesdays benching.
We just didnt think he was playing hard enough on the defensive end, Doran said. He came back with a vengeance in Games 3 and 4, and he deserves MVP honors.
Cohn responded on both ends of the court for the Dukes with 7 assists and 3 steals to go with his 25 points.
His message got to me, Cohn said. He made his point and I knew what I had to do differently. It definitely got to my head.
I had never been benched before. It got right to my heart right away. I think it was a good move by coach and I came back and played the way I should.
Cohn on the Dukes first possession drained a 3-pointer and York opened an 8-3 lead. The Dukes (4-0) continued to bomb from outside the arc as Rose hit two of his three 3-pointers and York extended its lead to 21-9 with 6:18 left in the first half.
Waubonsie Valley (3-1), began to slowly chip away at lead behind the play of Jared Brownridge and Bryan Jefferson, who each scored 15 points. The Warriors closed to 38-32 with 4:26 left in the third quarter on a basket by Jack Cordes.
It was 50-41 after three quarters when York pulled away, thanks to key free-throw shooting by Cohn. He nailed three free throws early in the period to ignite an 11-2 run. Cohn hit 7 free throws in that stretch and converted 9 of 10 in the quarter as the Dukes never looked back.
We had a great tournament, Doran said. I thought we got better with each game. This is a real nice win for us. It is certainly something our team should be proud of.
Rose finished with 11 points, while Stanley Roberts had 10 points and Chris Klos came off the bench to score 9 points for the Dukes, who shot 61 percent.
We got dejected early, Waubonsie Valley coach Steve Weemer said. We are a jump-shooting team and we missed some shots early. We have to learn how to play through that.