Lake Forest College Sports Information
February 17th, 2001
Contact:  Scott Rucker, SID

Lake Forest Rebounds to Defeat Knox 85-77  
Foresters aided by 39-26 edge on the boards

Eric Tolar scored a team-high 20 points on Saturday.
LAKE FOREST, IL - The Lake Forest College men's basketball team came up just short in their bid to repeat as Midwest Conference Champions, but did secure second place in the league with an 85-77 victory at home Saturday (February 17th) afternoon over Knox College. The Foresters finished the regular season with a 16-6 overall record and an 11-5 mark in the MWC, one game behind Grinnell College, who clinched the outright title by defeating Illinois College earlier in the day.

For the first time this season, sophomore forward/center Eric Tolar (Maywood, IL/Proviso East) led the team in scoring with 20 points, shooting 8-for-13 from the field and 4-for-5 from the free throw line. Tolar finished the conference's regular season ranked second in field goal percentage, connecting on 62.8% of his attempts from the floor in league games.

Sophomore guard Lee Taylor (Sheldon, IA/Sheldon) made 6 of 9 field goals, including 2 of 3 from three-point range, and was next on the Foresters with 16 points. Taylor also added 7 rebounds and 4 assists. Senior center J.R. Jurecko (Libertyville, IL/Libertyville) also had 7 boards and finished the regular season ranked second in the MWC in that category with 8.6 rebounds per league contest. Jurecko scored 14 points on 7-for-12 shooting from the field and sophomore guard Fred Bell (Mequon, WI/Homestead) added 13 points for Lake Forest.

For the third time in its last four games and the eighth this season, Lake Forest made at least half of their field goals, connecting on 34 of 66 attempts (51.5%) while holding Knox to just 41.5%. Lake Forest led the league in both field goal percentage offense (49.9%) and defense (37.9%). While the Foresters were a respectable 12-for-16 from the free throw line, Knox kept the game close by shooting 25-for-27 from the stripe and 8-for-16 from three-point range. The Foresters' 39-26 edge in rebounding made Knox the eighth opponent Lake Forest has out-rebounded by at least 12 boards this season.

The game was tied at 14 before the Foresters scored nine straight points to take the lead for good. The lead was as high as 10 and as low as 4 before the teams went into the locker room at halftime with Lake Forest leading 44-35. The Foresters' second half lead grew to as many as 12 before Knox used a 20-9 run to cut it to a single point (62-61) with ten minutes to play. Lake Forest responded with a 19-5 run over the next seven minutes to put the game away.

The Foresters' semi-final opponent in the Midwest Conference Tournament next Friday (February 23rd) at 5:00 PM will be third-place Illinois College, who finished the league's regular season with a 10-6 record. The winner of that game will play either host Grinnell College or Beloit College in the championship game at 3:00 PM on Saturday (February 24th). Saturday's winner will advance to the NCAA Tournament.

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