The creation of the Public League’s new super conferences has made Hyde Park vs. Kenwood just another game, at least according to Hyde Park senior Andrew Anderson.
With so many games against the state’s top teams, week in and week out it can be hard to look too far ahead in the season, even if you are playing your neighborhood rival from just one mile down the road.
Whether it was a regular game or not, Anderson’s 20 point, eight rebound and five assist game helped Hyde Park deal with a hostile environment to pull out an important 66-64 overtime victory and improve their conference resume.
“This was extremely important because right now everybody is jockeying for position in the conference,” said Hyde Park head coach Antonio Wiltz. “This secures that we will most likely at least finish fifth.
In the early going, it looked as though Hyde Park would take the game running away. Kenwood were unable to get anything going offensively, with Nas Turner (25 points 10 rebounds) scoring all of the Broncos points in the first quarter.
The scoring drought continued well into the second quarter as Hyde Park opened up as much as a 13 point lead before Kenwood settled into the game.
The Broncos started to ramp up the pressure on defense, and their 1-2-2 press led to countless Hyde Park turnovers which sparked an 8-0 run to get back into the contest.
Kenwood completely erased the once large deficit by halftime, and looked as though they seized momentum of the game when they took the lead for the first time on their first possession of the third quarter.
However, that momentum was quickly halted when towards the end of the third quarter Kenwood was assessed back to back technicals. Anderson would convert each of the four free throws giving Hyde Park a 42-37 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
Wiltz said: “Drew kept us in it. Being the point guard he controlled the game and he made plays when we needed him to.”
It wasn’t until three minutes left in the game when Kenwood finally made their move. The Broncos kept pushing the pace until it was a borderline track meet which like the second quarter, caused Hyde Park to cough up the ball.
A Turner layup put Kenwood in front with two minutes remaining, but neither team were able to hold onto their slim leads which led to the overtime session.
During the overtime session, neither team were able to gain any separation until Anderson hit two free throws with 4.4 seconds left to seal the win for Hyde Park.
Anderson said: “I had to be patient and knock them down. My team needed me and I wasn’t going to let them down,”
“These past couple of games Drew has stepped up and become a senior,” added Wiltz. “I’ve challenged him and challenged him and he’s responded. These last few games he’s taken it to another level.”