bball2By Bob Kopp

BDR Sports Correspondent

BELVIDERE – With only two returning starters, three returning seniors, a varsity inexperienced bench, only one player over 6’1″ at 6’5″, Head Coach Aaron Pearson and top assistant Nate Lister began their 9th season at the helm of a resurrected Belvidere basketball program under their tenure highlighted by the only NIC-10 championship (2012-2013) in School District 100 history.

Depending upon its increasingly renowned coaching, hustle, and legendary Buc toughness, Belvidere outscored South Elgin in every quarter on the way to a convincing 62-47 victory.

South Elgin presented a stern test for the young Bucs as the Storm featured a roster including seven seasoned seniors, D1 baseball recruit 6’9″ Tyler Hankins, and seven players over 6’2″.  Though towering over the Bucs, senior Hankins was held to 10 points by the Bucs who played much bigger in the paint.

When all-conference senior D1 football prospect Eric Munoz went down with a rolled ankle early in the first quarter after notching a quick two points, faithful Belvidere fans wondered how that would affect the young Bucs. They responded with a fury of tenacious defense and unabated hustle in a game that was never in doubt despite a slight 25-20 lead at intermission.

Junior Nate “Highlight Film” Norton led all scorers with 21 points.

Last year’s first-team all-NIC-10 senior Deante Barnes scored six of his eight points in the 4th and junior all-conference quarterback Austin Revolinski added 12 points with his typical aplomb.

Junior Xavier Dent, who controls the boards with Rodman-like tenacity, ferocity, and unselfishness, chipped in for nine points.

Completing the scoring were junior Will Morris (six), junior Jacob Rodriguez (two), and senior Matt Kopp (two).

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