After being down 12-10 in the first quarter on Saturday, Dunlap got a strong run in the second to go into halftime up by one.


After being down 12-10 in the first quarter on Saturday, Dunlap got a strong run in the second to go into halftime up by one.

 

Limestone came out strong after halftime, though, and never let up, beating the Eagles, 62-54.

 

“We didn’t execute some things,” coach Rick Schertz said. “We did a lot of things good, but it seems like one or two crucial things hurt us. They’re not a bad team. They’re athletic, they’re quick, they kind of do some of that stuff to you. The times that we did what we needed to do, we were fine.”

 

Late in the first quarter and early in the second, Dunlap went on a 13-0 run to take a 20-12 lead. However, Limestone then went on a 10-0 run as well, capped off by a 3-pointer and free throw by Donivine Stewart.

 

Stewart also set a record for points in the Mid-Illini conference during the game, surpassing Canton’s Kevin Rhodes’ total of 2,234.

 

“That’s what players like him do,” Schertz said. “That’s where his teammates turn to when they need a spark.”

 

Throughout the game, Dunlap dealt with a major problem the team has had all year: turnovers. Wild passes would go out of bounds, or be blocked and go into the Rockets’ hands.

 

“It’s mistakes that we’ve been making all year,” Schertz said. “We kind of know  who we are and we have to live with them, but we still have to try and get better.”

 

Another problem that the Eagles had to deal with were the referee calls. The game was allowed to be physical at times, but then small touch fouls were called minutes later. Schertz said it is something to which the team just has to adjust.

 

The team also had to adjust to an intentional foul called on senior Blake Abbott in the third quarter. Abbott got the call while trying to stop a layup at the basket.

 

“We tell our kids if a kid’s going for a layup, foul them hard, don’t give them the basket,” Schertz said.

 

Junior Nathan Gosnell finished with a game-high 23 points.

 

On Friday, the Eagles had another close game against East Peoria.

 

Dunlap trailed by two going into the fourth, but East Peoria stayed strong at the free throw line, making 13-of-16 shots to win, 57-48.

 

Gosnell led the Eagles with 27 points, including all but one of the 15 points the team had in the second quarter.

 

The Eagles finish their regular season  Friday against Pekin. The game will be Dunlap’s Senior Night.