Central A&M grabs third place
Raiders roll past Triopia, 70-39; Paradee, Heaton combine for 43 points
Building towards the future, ending the season with a win and giving everyone a last look at next year's 1A Carbondale Supersectional favorites.

With four junior starters set to return next season and 12-of-15 roster players as underclassmen, the Raiders closed out 2018-19 with a preview of being the “choice” to get back to Peoria with a resounding 70-39 shellacking of the Trojans.

Coach Rob Smith's club finished it's school record setting campaign at 33-4 as they outgunned Concord Triopia, 20-10 in the third quarter to pull away.

Junior guard Jacob Paradee scored 24 points for the Raiders, including 4-of-4 3-pointers, in the conquest.

Paradee was a defensive star in the game with five steals as the Raiders forced 17 Trojan turnovers.

Six-foot-four junior forward Connor Heaton tossed in 19 points, grabbed 13 rebounds and doled out six assists in the victory.

Heaton was 9-of-10 from the foul line.

Senior guard Austin Sloan, playing in his final prep roundball contest for the Raiders, added 13 points and five boards.

Griffin Andricks, also a junior forward, added seven points and junior Brycen Burgener added five.

“I'm glad we got to show the state what we are. We weren't who we are in the first half yesterday, but we certainly were today,” said Coach Smith. “I couldn't be more proud of them.”

But the real story of the third place game was the defensive end as they “smothered” Triopia, forcing a 16-of-50 shooting showing (32 percent) while commanding the paint with a 39-23 edge in rebounds.

Central A&M outscored 18-0 in transition points.

“We saw that they like to send people to the rebound, we call 'dog the rebound,' we thought if we could get a clean rebound and get it out we would have an advantage every time and they were, so we told our kids, if you get the outlet pass you're going to have a fast-break every time,” said Coach Smith. “And we thought they would have trouble guarding the second and third action off our offense, that certainly rang true.”

Concord Triopia saw its season come to an end with a pair of losses on the weekend to finish 33-5.

Coach Mike Lewis and his club was led by 6-foot-3 senior Garrett Snow with 11 points while senior guard Shawn Bell added eight.

Zach Thompson finished with six points for the team that won two overtime games to reach the 1A finals.

A team that shot the ball well this season from the arc, Triopia hit just 3-of-20 attempts in the contest against Central A&M.

“It wasn't our day. There's not much we did right, they (A&M) forced us into things, they spread us out a little bit, we made turnovers. We didn't get the ball to the middle of the floor, and when we did we didn't make shots, that's just how it goes,” said Coach Lewis.

Central A&M never trailed in the contest on Saturday afternoon as they got off to a much better start than they did the previous day against Cissna Park.

Buckets by Sloan and Paradee, with the second one off of a steal and fast-break, began a 11-4 run.

Andricks added a drive for points in transition, Sloan nailed down a 3-pointer and Andricks fed Connor Hutchins for a seven point early lead.

Triopia responded to get within four points at the end of the quarter.

Snow scored five points in the first and junior guard Broc Moore scored his only three points of the game on a trey from the left corner that bounced in.

Paradee rebounded a shot for a score that ended the frame at 18-14.

The junior guard scored twice more to begin the second quarter; taking a long pass from Sloan after a steal for a lay in and then drilling home another 3-pointer.

Paradee picked up his third personal foul on a charge with 3:24 to go and went to the bench for the rest of the half.

His Raider teammates stepped up in his absence.

Heaton scored on a rebound and Burgener added another transition basket.

Four free throws from Heaton gave A&M a 31-19 lead with :45.1 remaining in the half.

Snow, Snell and Thompson combined for seven points for Triopia as they went to the half down 31-21.

A 20-10 third quarter by the Raiders cushioned the advantage and allowed the team to end its season on a high note.

Heaton added seven points in the third quarter, with two highlight worthy scores in the process.

He made a steal and raced to the other end of the floor, making a behind the back dribble to get clear for a lay up and a 36-23 lead.

His second highlight on a drive in the lane resulted in a spinning the ball bank shot that found the bottom of the nest to end the stanza at 51-31.

The second shot was part of a 13-0 run that ended the third and began the fourth quarter.

Sloan hit another 3-pointer, Heaton added two free throws and another score in the paint while Paradee converted another fast break for a 60-31 lead.

An Andricks bucket from Paradee pushed the Raiders' lead to the max; 62-34, before both coaches emptied the pine.

“The third-place game is hard to get up for – they were, we weren't – but I'm still proud of these kids,” said Coach Lewis. “I'm proud of the way they did it, I'm proud of the way we played; a bunch of great kids.”

1A State Third Place Game
Concord Triopia
Moweaqua Central A&M
Concord Triopia (39) – Snow 5 0 1-2 11, Allen 2 0 0-0 4, Embley 0 1 0-0 3, S. Bell 2 1 1-1 8, Thompson 2 0 2-5 6, Bachar 0 0 0-0 0, C. Moore 0 0 0-0 0, Beard 0 0 0-0 0, Stock 0 0 0-0 0, Burns 0 0 0-0 0, Lakamp 0 0 0-0 0, G. Bell 0 0 0-0 0, Bridgewater 1 0 0-0 2, B. Moore 0 1 0-0 3, Rouland 1 0 0-0 2.
2FG-13, 3FG-3, FT-4-8, PF-15.
Moweaqua Central A&M (70) – Andricks 2 1 0-0 7, Hutchins 1 0 0-0 2, Jacob Paradee 6 4 0-0 24, Heaton 5 0 9-10 19, A. Sloan 2 3 0-1 5, R. Sloan 0 0 0-0 0, Nidiffer 0 0 0-0 0, Burgener 2 0 1-2 5, James Paradee 0 0 0-0 0, Enge 0 0 0-0 0, Woods 0 0 0-0 0, Fenton 0 0 0-0 0, Bagley 0 0 0-0 0, Palmer 0 0 0-0 0, Waterman 0 0 0-0 0.
2FG-18, 3FG-8, FT-10-13, PF-14.

Fouled Out – None.
Technical Fouls – None.