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Bulldogs start fast, hang on to go to 3-1

Mundelein's Cliff Dunigan (foreground) chases after loose ball while front Waukegan's DeVonte Taylor (21) during MundeleWarren High School Boys Varsity

Mundelein's Cliff Dunigan (foreground) chases after a loose ball while in front of Waukegan's DeVonte Taylor (21) during the Mundelein and Warren High School Boys Varsity Basketball Thanksgiving Tournament on Friday, Nov. 23, 2012, at Mundelein High Schoo

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Updated: December 25, 2012 6:07AM

Waukegan built a 17-point lead early in the second half, then held on for dear life, edging host Mundelein 65-63 Friday in Round 4 of the Mundelein/Warren season-opening boys basketball tournament.

The Bulldogs (3-1) will play Lakes at 1 on Saturday, and Mundelein (2-2) will face North Chicago (4-0) at 6.

The Bulldogs’ biggest lead was 36-19, but But Mundelein hit four 3-pointers in a 16-5 run to close within 46-41 and was within 62-60 with 23 seconds left.

That’s when Mundelein’s Sean O’Brien (19 points, 8 rebounds) shot two free throws for the tie, but missed the second, leaving the Mustangs behind 62-61.

Waukegan’s Jerome Davis (19 points, 7 boards) scored on a layup with 16 seconds left to make it 64-61, and O’Brien scored with seven seconds left to make it 64-63.

Waukegan’s Quinton Davis (21 points, 7 rebounds) was fouled with four seconds left, and missed both free throws, but his second miss came back to him and he passed to Davis, who hit 1-of-2 from the line with 0.7 left to complete the scoring.

“We weren’t panicked at all. We’re a veteran team. Give credit to Mundelein. They raised their intensity. They were a little more assertive and pointed offensively than we were in the second half,” said winning coach Ron Ashlaw. “We need to make shots and free throws at the end, but this was the best effort we’ve sustained all season.”

On the other side, Mustang coach Richard Knar was pleased with the way his team came back.

“I was disappointed in the first half because I thought we were tentative,” Knar said. “It was the first time we faced fullcourt pressure this season, but there’s no excuse for us to handle it poorly.

“I have no problems with the way we played in the second half. I thought Cliff Dunigan settled us down and some other guys stepped up and hit shots. I was happy with the way they responded with Sean in foul trouble.”

Dunigan had 21 points and eight rebounds. Dylan Delaquila added 14 points. Mundelein was 17-of-27 from the field in the second half, including 7-of-10 from behind the arc.

Devonte Taylor had seven points and 17 boards for Waukegan.

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