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It still is going to take some time for Evanston to figure everything out, but Monday was a good start.
After losing all five starters from a team that won a sectional championship, the Wildkits opened the season with an 85-35 win over Holy Trinity at Lane’s tournament.
Nibra White led all scorers with 17, and Will Jones and Pete Winslow each added 11 points.
“We are starting over,” said starting guard Chris Rudnicki, one of only three returning players with varsity experience. “It’s exciting, but in a different way.”
Evanston coach Mike Ellis got minutes from all 15 players and liked how they worked together.
“The main question we answered was we can play as a team,” the coach said. “We have so much inexperience on the floor, and the tendency can be for players to try and do too much. I thought we did a nice job of being unselfish.”
White, a junior guard, scored 13 points in the first quarter as the Wildkits raced to a 27-8 advantage. Evanston led 48-21 at intermission.
Sophomore forward Elijah Henry, the lone underclassmen in the starting lineup, showed he can be a contributor with 10 points.
Ellis expects to experiment with his lineup throughout this week’s tournament and even into December.
“As we move along, it will play itself out,” he said. “In the first half of the season, we will see what is the best unit, who is best making plays on both ends.”
Evanston plays No. 19-ranked Notre Dame on Tuesday at Lane. The Dons beat Lane 64-45 on Monday.