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Boys Hoops Wrap | Brother Rice, Sandburg win at Shootout

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By Xavier Sanchez

Sandburg hosted 11 other schools in their inaugural Shot Clock Charity Shootout.

Twelve teams participated in the event, which Sandburg coach John Daniels dedicated to his friend and former Stagg assistant coach Ray Milnes, who died in 2019. Milnes, an Orland Park native, was a volunteer varsity basketball coach for the Chargers from 2011-2017, during Daniels’ tenure as head coach at the Palos Hills school.

Brother Rice (12-0, 5-0 CCL Blue) and Lyons were among the area teams that played at the Shootout, with the Crusaders maintaining their unblemished mark with a 53-39 win over the Lions.

The Crusaders also defeated Montini and De La Salle last week, and won the three games by an average margin of 15.7 points. Marcos Gonzalez had the big game off the week with 20 points against De La Salle

The host Eagles (4-5, 0-3 SWS Blue) beat Timothy Christian, 70-44. David Vargas scored a game-high 23 points and hit seven 3-pointers for the victors.

Sandburg had lost, 73-58, to a strong Bradley team earlier in the week.

Daniels thought it was only proper to honor Milnes, who was active in the community and supported many charitable organizations, by dedicated the inaugural Shootout in his memory. Proceeds from the event went to the Andrew Weishar Foundation.

Daniels was introduced to the charity by former Stagg standout and current Cleveland Cavaliers guard Max Strus. Proceeds from Strus’ summer basketball camp at Stagg went to the Foundation, which supports local families who have loved ones battling cancer. It was founded in the memory of Brother Rice graduate Andrew Weishar, who died of cancer in 2012.

During halftime of the Brother Rice-Lyons game at the Shootout, Daniels announced the effort had raised $5,700, exceeding the goal of $5,000.

A compilation of area boys basketball teams from games played Dec. 11-17.


Argo (2-8, 0-3 SSC Red)

The Argonauts earned a 77-31 non-conference win over Universal on December 15. Juniors Kassam Saleh and Jayvon King each put up 18 points. Universal’s 31 points are the fewest Argo has allowed in a game this season. The Argonauts next play Maine East on December 27 in the Maine East Holiday Tournament.


Chicago Christian (3-8, 0-3 Chicagoland Christian)

Chicago Christian went 1-2, with an impressive win over Chicago Bulls College Prep. The Knights scored a season-high 58 points and guard Malachi Kreider scored a season-high 21 points in the victory. They close out the calendar year with a home game against Universal on December 22.


Evergreen Park (7-2, 1-2 SSC Red)

The Mustangs defeated Addison Trail and Bogan, while averaging 78 points scored across the two non-conference wins. Tre Dowdell averaged 22.5 points for the week. Lonnie Mosley had the big game of the week with 27 points (five 3-pointers) and six assists against Addison Trail while filling in for Nolan Sexton.


Lyons (2-6, 1-2 West Suburban Silver)

The Lions suffered two losses, including a hard-fought matchup against undefeated Brother Rice. Liam Taylor had Lyons’ high-scoring effort of the week with 17 points against the Crusaders. Taylor also grabbed five rebounds and blocked three shots in the game.


Marist (9-2, 3-2 ESCC)

The RedHawks went 2-1, with their loss coming in a 62-61 decision to Benet. They bounced back with a 29-point win against College Jones Prep. Ten different RedHawks scored, including four in double-digits.


Mt. Carmel (11-2, 2-0 CCL Blue)

The Caravan defeated St. Ignatius and IC Catholic, and lost to out-of-state Webster Groves (Missouri). Lee Marks was Mt. Carmel’s leading scorer with 21 points in the 69-66 overtime loss to the Statesmen. The Caravan plays Proviso East on December 23.


Nazareth (5-5, 2-3 ESCC)

The Roadrunners split their two conference matchups with a loss to Joliet Catholic and a win against Carmel. The win over the Corsairs gave them their first conference victory and snapped a five-game losing skid. Senior Talen Pearson scored a team-high 17 points in the win, with juniors Matthew Callahan and Danny Wrzesinski scoring 10 points each.


Oak Lawn (9-0, 3-0 SSC Red)

Oak Lawn suffered a 49-42 to loss to Stagg on December 14 to snap their undefeated start to the season. Donte Montgomery was the Spartans leading scorer with 17 points in the loss. He played strong defense as well, which led to four steals. Corey Lee finished with 13 points, six rebounds and two assists.


Reavis (6-2, 20 SSC Red)

The Rams defeated Elmwood Park and Universal by an average of 26.5 points to improve to 6-2. Angel Fernandez scored 20 points in the win over Universal.


Richards (4-7, 0-3 SSC Red)

The Bulldogs played three games, including a 79-47 loss to Hinsdale South to start the week. They snapped a four-game losing streak with a 22-point win over Julian and followed that with a two-point win over Longwood.


Riverside-Brookfield (9-1, 2-0 Metro Suburban)

The Bulldogs extended their win streak to six games with victories over Crete-Monee and Ridgewood. The player of the week for the Bulldogs was senior Stefan Cicic, who averaged 22 points and 14 rebounds, including a 26-point, 18-board effort in an 88-57 conference win over Ridgewood.


St. Laurence (6-5, 3-0 CCL White)

The Vikings dropped a game to Fenwick to begin the week, but bounced back with wins over conference rival St. Francis De Sales, 87-66, behind Josh Pickett’s 24 points and Zerrick Johnson’s double-double (23 points, 10 rebounds). They topped Hillcrest, 38-35, the following day. St. Laurence plays Andrew on Dec. 26 in the Jack Tosh Holiday Classic at York.


St. Rita (1-11, 0-4 CCL Blue)

The Mustangs dropped games to Providence, Leo and Waukegan. The Mustangs entered this week still seeking their first win in December.


Shepard (1-7, 0-3 SSC Red)

The Astros had a rare off-week during what coach Anthony Chuccariello has called a rebuilding year. Shepard lost 10 players from last year’s team to graduation and lost a two-year varsity player who transferred.

With no returning starters from 2022, along with six sophomores and only two players who had varsity experience prior to this season, the Astros are among the youngest and most inexperienced teams in the area. Senior Jeremiah Storey and sophomores Aaron Arombide and Aurion Lee Barnes are outside scoring threats, while junior Jovan Thomas provides a scoring presence in the paint. Peter Primbas has been playing hard on defense.

“We haven’t been on script in offense during games, with too many turnovers and poor shot selections, and when we’ve had great shots selections, we’ve missed,” Chuccariello said.

He noted that in a loss to Tinley Park on December 5, the Astros missed 21 shots that were taken within 6 feet of the basket.

“We will work on powering up off the glass to score and reducing our turnovers, while getting on script with the timing and reads of our cut and screens,” he added.


Stagg (9-2, 1-1 SWS Red)

Stagg started the week with a two point loss to Andrew before an impressive win against undefeated Oak Lawn and another against Barrington. Seniors Lebarion Gilmore, David Ortiz, and Connor Williams combined for 40 of the 49 Charger points in the win over the Spartans. In their win over Barrington, four different Chargers scored in double-digits including a 20-point performance from Ortiz.

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