Okawville star Noah Frederking takes down Newark

Okawville's Noah Frederking (30) holds back Newark's Corey Jacobson (4) from going to the basket. Worsom Robinson/ For the Sun-Times.

PEORIA—Okawville senior Noah Frederking is the star attraction of the Class 1A State Tournament this weekend. The 6-4 Evansville recruit is the only player signed with a Division I school.

Newark thought it had an answer for Frederking. The Norsemen’s star player, Will Clausel, has an excellent reputation as a defender. That plan fell apart when Clausel picked up some early fouls. Frederking went on to score 24 points and lead the Rockets to a 63-48 win in the Class 1A State Semifinals.

“I wanted a better shot at [Frederking] and foul troubles took that away from me,” Clausel said. “I have to stay away from that next time I guess.”

Frederking was 8-for-18 from the field and grabbed 14 rebounds. He’s a loud, active, aggressive force on the court.

“[Shane Ganz] got in foul trouble so I felt like I had to score to get us a bigger lead for the fourth quarter when they would make their run,” Frederking said.

“I played him in AAU once but that was awhile ago,” Clausel, a 6-4 senior, said. “I didn’t really know what to expect.”

Newark (28-5) shot poorly, 19-for-56 from the field and 4-for-23 from three-point range.

“It was the worst shooting game we’ve had all year,” Newark coach Rick Tollefson said. “Tied with the supersectional last year. Sometimes that’s just the way it goes. They are a good defensive team but I thought we had plenty of looks to get in the game.”

Dylan Patrick led the Norsemen with 17 points and Clausel scored 12.

“I started off slow but I knew I had to get something going for the team,” Patrick said. “I just tried to drive and get to the free throw line.”

Ganz, a senior guard, scored 17 for Okawville (32-3). He as a factor on offense and defense.

“We were all kind of calm actually,” Ganz said. “Some of us stayed up sorta late last night because we couldn’t sleep, waiting for this moment. Of course you are going to have some nerves because it is the state championships. But you just have to go out there and have some fun.”

Okawville will play St. Anthony in the title game on Saturday. The Rockets were ranked second in the final Associated Press Class 1A state poll and St. Anthony was No. 10.

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