Enough talk about boisterous Notre Dame High fans. The Knights defeated Bosco Tech, 79-59, Thursday night in a Del Rey League game at Notre Dame, but this time, amid the noise, they applied the silent but deadly treatment in the form of Kenny Hicks.
Hicks, a 6-4 junior guard who scored 25 points against Alemany last week, blitzed Bosco Tech, which barely noticed.
With Notre Dame ahead, 51-38, midway through the third quarter, Hicks came off the bench, looped two high-arc three-point shots, made another jump shot and, silently led a Knight flurry that pushed the score to 61-38 when the third quarter ended.
“He’s so quiet on the floor that you don’t notice him, then he scores eight points just like that,” teammate Brian Jones said.
Coach Mick Cady believes Hicks is coming into his own.
“He’s always been quiet. In the past, almost too quiet,” Cady said. “But he fools opponents because they look at him and picture a not-very-competitive player, and Kenny is very competitive.
“He’s a John Wooden-script player. He doesn’t show any emotion or let anything get to him but just plays.”
Hicks scored 20 points, Jones had 25 and Bruce Heicke, a senior forward, added 22 as the Knights won their eighth game in a row after starting the season 1-6. They have won their first five league games. Bosco Tech dropped to 7-9, 2-2 in league play.
“We are just taking this streak one game at a time, keeping everything in perspective,” Cady said.
Jones, meanwhile, said affirmatively, “No, we won’t lose again. We’ve got confidence now.”
The near-capacity crowd was strong and loud and had plenty to bellow about from the start. Notre Dame hit its first three shots, forced turnovers with a full-court press, and took a 9-0 lead before two minutes had elapsed.
The Knights cooled down, hitting only 8 of 24 shots the rest of the half, but still led, 39-23 at halftime.
Notre Dame shot 43% in the game compared to 51% for Bosco Tech, but the Knights held a 26-16 rebound advantage. Jones led Notre Dame with six rebounds and center Paul Nelson had five.
Sixty-three free throws were taken in the foul-marred game. Notre Dame made 26 of 36 (72%) and Bosco Tech made 17 of 27 (62%). Heicke made 14 of 16 free throws, including four on two technical fouls on Bosco Tech Coach Jorge Calienes.