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Balanced Falcons top Tigers

WHEATON – Having sprained both his ankles over the course of this season, Andrew Slivinski has spent more time in the training room than on the practice court this winter.

But that hasn’t kept the Wheaton North senior guard from being a productive player, and on Friday, he scored a game-high 12 points to lead the Falcons to a 48-38 victory over Wheaton Warrenville South.

“I have to give a huge shoutout to the trainers,” said Slivinski, who estimated he is playing at 50 or 60 percent. “They get us ready and they do a good job with therapy. It’s a grind, but I’ve got to do whatever it takes to get a ‘W.’”

Count Falcons’ coach Dave Brackmann among those impressed by Slivinski’s continued production.

“I think I said it last week, he’s in more pain than he lets on,” Brackmann said, “but he keeps battling. He really worked hard coming into this season, and it’s great to see his injuries not slowing him down too much and to see him have this success.”

The win, which upped the team’s overall record to 10-8, was an important one for Wheaton North as it broke a four-game losing streak.

“We’ve had a lot of adversity,” Brackmann said, “but the kids have stayed positive. They’ve been working hard and we have talked about fighting through injuries. We are a team that I think still has a good run in us, especially if we keep getting healthy.”

The Falcons continue to play without Matt Biegalski, who suffered a high ankle sprain in December. The squad also lost guard Mike Cerone to an injury suffered in practice last week.

“One of the strengths of our team is we have really good depth,” Slivinski said. “We have a lot of guys who can start, probably eight or nine. When one of our guys goes down, we look to the bench and we have confidence in all of the guys.”

Nick Jordan added nine points for the home team and Jake Heggeland scored eight. Aidan Hernandez topped WWS with nine points and Matt Kienzle contributed eight.

Both Wheaton North and Wheaton Warrenville South were scheduled to play in the Quad City Shootout on Feb. 1, but that was canceled due to the weather.

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