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Sandburg coach Todd Allen said the scouting report recognized Ryan Modiest as Joliet West’s “best pure shooter.”
The problem for Sandburg was stopping him.
Modiest deployed a silky perimeter stroke for 19 points as Joliet West downed host Sandburg 59-41 Friday in SouthWest Suburban Blue action.
Modiest, a 40 percent shooter from behind the arc, scored 12 first-quarter points on a barrage of threes to knock Sandburg from its 2-3 zone. His fourth three-pointer of the frame gave West a 14-4 lead with 1:23 remaining.
“Whenever Ryan has an open look, he has free reign to shoot that basketball,” West coach Luke Yaklich said. “If he doesn’t, he’s coming out.”
Brandon McCullum added 10 points and Morris Dunnigan --shadowed by Sandburg’s 6-foot-7 Malek Harris -- netted 10 points, six rebounds and five assists for the Tigers (10-5, 4-2).
Dunnigan had been averaging 27.5 points per game over his last four contests, but with strong defense from Harris and a Joliet West lead, the senior wasn’t asked to look for his shot. He did, however, manage two highlight-reel dunks via steals, the second coming on a cocked-back one-hander.
“Morris had a couple of good drives and kicks, and Carl (Terrell) too, which left me open,” Modiest said. “I took my shots and I didn’t really force any. It’s fun playing with them. I know they get me shots and I get them shots, too, by spacing the floor.”
Harris led Sandburg (2-14, 1-5) with 19 points and 11 rebounds.
“He’s that good. Malek Harris is a Division-I basketball player,” Yaklich said. “He’s going to get his points.”
“They shot it extremely well to start and got us back on our heels early,” Allen said. “Other than Malek, we didn’t really have anyone else step up for us tonight.”