By Bob Kopp

BDR Sports Correspondent

After the sophomores set the stage with a thrilling 43-41 win over their guests, the Bucs stopped the salty varsity Pretzels for the second time this year, 53-40.

Sophomore Andy Valladares led all scorers with 16 points and sophomore Austin Hausen knocked down a bucket with nine seconds on the clock to seal the deal in the opener.

Still smarting from being smacked down 60-44 in the season opener on Monday, Nov. 21 at the District 205 Tip-Off Classic when senior captain, first-team all-state quarterback, and a lock to repeat as popular consensus first-team all-NIC 10 in basketball Austin Revolinski led the Bucs with 14 points, Freeport was especially feisty, chirpy, and chippy.

While their aggressive play was spiced with whining and pouting, they challenged the Buc-tough reputation of the hosts who are often more stymied by close officiating than opponents which proved to be a mistake as Revolinski responded with his renowned physical play, leadership by example, and led all scorers with 18 points.

Senior Will Morris, another lock for all-conference recognition, added 12 points.

Senior Xavier Dent, who owns the paint and may be the most underrated player in the NIC-10 except for Head Coach Aaron Pearson, top assistant Nate Lister, and knowledgeable fans, contributed eight points and was followed by seniors Austin Brockmann (four), Joey Hernandez (three), Nate Horton (two), and Jacob Rodriguez (two) along with juniors Phil Kolk (two), Shawn Dean (one), and Brady Hauser (one).

Belvidere returns to NIC-10 action on Friday, Jan. 6 in a visit to formidable East which features a tall and athletic roster led by 6’2″ sophomore Chris Burnell who is attracting a lot of attention at the next level.

During the Christmas break, the Bucs will play in Marengo’s E.C. Nichols Tourney.

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