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Boys Basketball: Aurora Christian taken down by Newark at the line

Newark's Jack Clausel protects rebound second quarter against AurorChristian Tuesday Newark. | Mary Beth Nolan/For Sun-Times Media

Newark's Jack Clausel protects a rebound in the second quarter against Aurora Christian Tuesday in Newark. | Mary Beth Nolan/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: December 18, 2013 2:18PM

Visiting Aurora Christian coach Pat McNamara insists the tiny Newark gym has “soft rims” but you couldn’t tell it from his team’s shooting stats in Tuesday’s 60-57 non-conference loss to the Norsemen.

“We didn’t shoot well, but we didn’t work hard enough to get good shots, either,” said McNamara, whose team dropped to 3-4 after shooting 34 percent (25-of-73), 12 percent (3-of-26) from 3-point range and 25 percent (4-of-16) from the free throw line.

“Offensively, we’ve got to share the ball and play unselfishly and play smarter. Newark was very patient at the offensive end.”

The brothers Clausel led the way for coach Rick Tollefson’s Newark club, which climbed to 6-3.

Jack Clausel, a 6-foot-6 sophomore center/forward, and younger brother Will, a 6-2 freshman point guard, each had 17 points.

“The younger one had 11-of-15 from the free throw line,” McNamara said. “That was the difference right there.”

Newark didn’t shoot lights out, hitting 41 percent (18-of-44) from the floor but only 15 percent (2-of-13) from beyond the arc. The difference in the game came at the line, where the home team made 74 percent (23-of-31).

The visiting Eagles started fast, leading 15-10 early in the second quarter before Newark rallied to take a 30-27 edge at the break. The Norsemen scored the first seven points of the third quarter and then held on down the stretch, making 11-of-16 free throws.

“It was a little scary for a second there but we got our feet under us and started boxing out more and scoring some points,” Jack Clausel said. “(Will Clausel) settled down and really took care of the ball. I was really proud of him. He’s exceeded my expectations (thus far).

“They didn’t have any threes until the fourth quarter. I don’t know if that was really due to us, but I’m glad it happened.”

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