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St. Charles North's Quinten Payne moves downcourt while being defended by Waukegan's Quintin Davis on Thursday in Pontiac. | Patrick Gleason~For Sun-Times Media
PONTIAC — St. Charles North senior Quinten Payne is well aware of the near-folk hero status his older brother Cully earned his senior season at the Pontiac Holiday Tournament.
“We talk all the time,” Quinten Payne said. “I talked to him before the tournament. He just told me to go out and play hard. I would love to have a tournament like he did. I watched the film of his performances here.”
Payne is a much different player than his older brother, but the results were pretty similar Thursday in the North Stars’ 66-58 win over Waukegan in the first round.
Payne scored 22 points, grabbed six boards and handed out four assists. He shot 9-for-19 from the field and 3-for-8 from three.
“He’s a very strong, athletic kid,” Waukegan coach Ron Ashlaw said. “He was the best player on the floor this morning.”
Payne will join his brother at Loyola next season.
St. Charles North drained three-point shots at the buzzer of the first, second and third quarter. The game was tight until Chris Preocanin’s half-court three that just beat the third quarter buzzer. That gave the North Stars a 42-35 lead and Waukegan would never get that close again.
“We are a shooting team,” Payne said. “That’s definitely what we do best. We came out shooting well and that set the tone for us.”
Alec Goetz scored 16 for St. Charles North (7-4) and Tony Neari added 10 points and nine rebounds.
DeVonte Taylor scored 19 points and 10 rebounds for Waukegan (7-6) and senior Jordan Johnson added 18 points and six rebounds.
The Bulldogs beat St. Charles North 51-50 on Dec. 9.
“That had an impact,” Payne said. “We knew what each other wanted to do and we didn’t take them lightly.”
St. Charles North advances to play West Aurora in the quarterfinals on Friday. Waukegan will face Lockport in the consolation bracket.