Be careful not to overreact to Young’s 64-50 loss to Gonzaga (DC) Saturday night at the Chicago Elite Classic.
The Dolphins definitely didn’t look like the area’s No. 2 ranked team. They trailed 56-34 late in the third quarter and no one other than NIU recruit Xavier Amos was doing anything.
Remember, it was just their first game of the season. Young has had disappointing season openers before in the Chicago Elite Classic and gone on to have an excellent season.
The one positive from the game for Dolphins coach Tyrone Slaughter has to be his team’s fight at the end. They rallied back and cut it to a 12-point game on a few occasions.
It’s possible it was asking too much to expect AJ Casey (seven points, 10 rebounds) and Dalen Davis (seven points) to immediately rebound from their summer funks.
Slaughter’s teams have generally improved tremendously throughout the course of the season. That work begins now.
Amos finished with 28 points. Only four players scored for Young, Marcus Pigram was the other scorer with eight points.
Devin Dinkins led Gonzaga (3-0) with 18 points.
Simeon 64, Mater Dei (CA) 50
The Wolverines (3-0) impressed with a dominant third quarter. Simeon turned a tie game into a significant win, outscoring the Red Devils 21-7 in the fourth quarter.
Miles and Wes Rubin, a pair of 6-8 twins that transferred from Homewood-Flossmoor, both scored 17 points and guard Aviyon Morris added 14. Jaylen Drane had six points and six assists. Jaylen Griffith added eight points, three assists and three steals.
“Our guards are real experienced so that is half the battle right there,” Simeon coach Robert Smith. “Aviyon understands me. He made a big three that really got our system moving.”
Zack Davidson led Mater Dei (2-1) with 25 points and 10 rebounds.
Kenwood 80, Evangel Christian, KY 38
Broncos coach Mike Irvin promised showtime and his team delivered. Junior Darrin Ames was spectacular, draining 7 of 9 three-pointers to finish with 30 points. Davius Loury added 20 and senior Trey Pettigrew scored 13.
Kenwood was 15 for 35 from three-point range.
Thornton 60, St. Rita 51
The stage was set for a memorable clash between Illinois recruits when Thornton and St. Rita faced off at the Chicago Elite Classic. Thornton features Ty Rodgers, a top 100 national player that recently transferred from Michigan and committed to IIlinois.
St. Rita has a bevy of talented young players, including 6-9 sophomore Morez Johnson, who committed to Illinois last month.
Unknown junior Vincent Rainey snuck in and stole the show. Rainey scored 19 points off the bench to lead the Wildcats to a 60-51 victory at Credit Union 1 Arena.
“He can shoot the ball and he loves the lights,” Thornton coach Tai Streets said. “That was awesome.”
St. Louis Vashon 62, North Lawndale 59
That’s a pretty solid loss for the Phoenix, which basically didn’t have a season last year. Ronald Chambers and Damarion Wyatt each scored 16.
North Lawndale had a chance to take the lead with 15 seconds left but turned the ball over and Vashon shot well enough from the line in the final seconds to seal the win.
Kennard Davis Jr. led Vashon with 20 points and Jayden Nicholson added 18. Vashon is 4-0 this season and all the wins are against Illinois schools (Lanphier, St. Rita, Tinley Park).
Brad Underwood and Tim Anderson just arrived at the Chicago Elite Classic. This Thornton-St. Rita game up next is my favorite of the shootout as well. There’s a Kentucky assistant across the way. Porter Moser of Oklahoma is also here. Not too shabby of a college coach turnout for a Saturday.
St. Louis Chaminade 46, St. Ignatius 33
St. Ignatius began the season with a top five ranking and aspirations to finish the season in Champaign.
Things haven’t gone according to plan so far. The Wolfpack are just 3-4 after losing a high-profile game to St. Louis Chaminade on Saturday in the Chicago Elite Classic at Credit Union 1 Arena.
“We’re still the same team we were before the season started,” St. Ignatius junior Richard Barron said. “Everyone is going to lose a couple games. It’s only the beginning, it doesn’t matter. We’re just going to keep working. We have an end goal in March, not right now. We may drop a couple but we are never going to change our character.”
The Wolfpack didn’t score a field goal for the final 6:30 of the game.
“We got a lot better just during the course of that game,” St. Ignatius coach Matt Monroe said. “We’re certainly not satisfied with moral victories but we saw a lot of improvement in a multitude of ways. Especially on the defensive end.”
Senior guard AJ Redd led the Wolfpack with nine points and seven rebounds. Jackson Kotecki added eight points and five rebounds.
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