URBANA - Craig Lutes and Sheldon Harper combined for 29 points and the Normal Community High School basketball team put the clamps down defensively in a 48-34 victory over Urbana in Big 12 Conference action Friday night.
The win in the regular-season finale was Normal Community's fifth in a row and sixth in seven games and boosted the Ironmen's record to 13-15 overall and 6-7 in the league.
"This was a nice win to push us into the regionals," said NCHS coach Dave Witzig. "It was a good team effort and good team win. Everybody played quality minutes."
Normal Community seized control in the second quarter. Harper scored nine of his 13 points in the period to help extend an 8-6 lead to 23-12 by halftime. The Ironmen continued to pull away after intermission, holding Urbana to six points in the third period to increase the advantage to 35-18.
"Sheldon and Craig were able to get to the lane and get to the free throw line," said Witzig. "We shared the ball well offensively as a team and were able to get some easy baskets."
Lutes led the Ironmen with 16 points.
"Defensively, it was a really good team effort," said Witzig. "We held (Ryne) Brownfield, who is one of their leading scorers, to no field goals. Urbana played hard though and made us work hard."
Urbana (8-17, 4-9) was led by Alan Douglas with a game-high 17 points.