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Michael O’Brien’s high school basketball notebook

Scores, highlights and analysis from the best games of Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021.

Glenbard West’s Troy Glover (15) slams home a shot against Hinsdale Central.
Glenbard West’s Troy Glover (15) slams home a shot against Hinsdale Central.
Allen Cunningham/For the Sun-Times

Max Christie is a burger boy! Congrats to Christie, it’s a huge honor that the entire Mid-Suburban League can take pride in.

That makes two consecutive years with a McDonald’s All-American from Illinois. The drought is officially over.

I did learn something during the long spell without a burger boy, though. It really doesn’t matter and is zero indication of the level of talent in the state. The McDonald’s committee is just a bunch of guys that won’t go to a single Public League game all season, so what do they know? Talen Horton-Tucker and Ayo Dosunmu seem to be doing just fine without the McDonald’s All-American tag. It’s still mind-boggling to me the THT didn’t win Mr. Basketball, but that is another discussion. He was too much of a late-bloomer for the McDonald’s committee to have a clue about him.

Full disclosure: I’m finding the notebooks a little tough to do this season. It totally has to do with the lack of playoffs. I don’t really know what we are working towards. It’s all over in a few weeks. I depend on the flow of the season to kind of make this thing go.

I wonder if the same thing is happening with any teams. They are probably mentally stronger than me. But I will soldier on.

I was in Glen Ellyn tonight to get a look at Glenbard West and Hinsdale Central. The Hilltoppers lived up to they hype and Braden Huff is a total monster of a high school player, even this early in his junior season. If they can figure out the point guard position the sky is the limit next season when we actually do have some playoffs.

Tuesday’s top games

No. 7 Hillcrest 70, Shepard 33: Julius Rollins is back from injury. He scored eight points and Jakobi Heady led the way with 22.

Rich 63, Thornwood 34: The first win for Rich. Huge congrats to the entire community and coach Cornelius Crossley. I lived through a sports consolidation way back in the mid-90’s and I know how challenging it is. Devonta Blevins scored 13 and Gary Clay added eight points.

Lincoln-Way East 74, Sandburg 43: The Griffins are 2-4. That isn’t going to impress anyone. But I liked what I saw from them. This group could figure it out and make a playoff run....well, guess not. Junior Jack Vegter scored a career-high 27 points and soph George Bellevue added eight points and 16 rebounds.

Oak Lawn 60, Eisenhower 59 OT: Late game heroics from Ryan Kennelly! His putback with six seconds left won it. Kennelly had 12 points and eight rebounds and senior Rodney Washington added 10 points and nine rebounds.

No. 14 Homewood-Flossmoor 71, No. 25 Bolingbrook 62: This is where I was originally heading tonight, until I heard the Raiders’ star Kai Evans was out with an injury. Clearly Bolingbrook held their own without Evans. Christian Meeks led H-F with 20 points and Tai Walters scored 16.

Lockport 52, Andrew 44 OT: Another OT win for a team that would likely have grown and improved into a real playoff threat. Angelo Vassilakis had 14 points and nine rebounds and Mats Deksnys continued his breakout season with 18 points and seven boards.

Glenbrook North 62, Vernon Hills 55 OT: Ryan Cohen had a big night with 27 points and Blake Lidskin filled up the stat sheet with 16 points, eight rebounds and four assists.

Oak Forest 45, TF South 37: You know I’ll be keeping tabs on Robbie Avila all season. He had 20 points and 13 rebounds and Eli Lipsett added 13 points. The Bengals are 4-1.

Timothy Christian 62, Ridgewood 41: As I typed that I realized that based on all the Sun-Times style rules for high schools we should just be calling them Timothy. Weird. Might have to start doing that. Josh Harris had 19 points and four rebounds and Ben VanderWal added 12 points, four rebounds and four blocks.

Oak Park 56, York 53: Looks like there were a lot of close ones tonight. Justin Mullins led the Huskies with 22 points and eight rebounds. Demetrius Dortch and Sam Lewis each added eight points.

No. 19 Kankakee 51, Bloom 39: The Kays remain unbeaten. Kamar Whittaker scored 15 and Rashard Harris added 14 points and seven rebounds. Bloom is young again, starting four sophs and a junior. Sophomore KJ Cobb led the Blazing Trojans with 10 points and junior Emondrik Ford added eight points, seven rebounds and six blocks.

Rockford Lutheran 97, Indian Creek 78: A Timberwolves lose is quite the notebook rarity. I don’t know anything at all about Rockford Lutheran, but they are 9-0 and clearly awesome. Michael Lampson scored 20 for IC.

Yorkville Christian 94, Normal West 80: Jaden Schutt scored 28 for the Mustangs.

No. 9 Glenbrook South 71, Deerfield 49: Cooper Noard scored 20 in the first quarter! Nick Martinelli scored 22.

Collins 71, Schurz 40: So, so good to see Public League basketball is back. Freshman Antoine Glasper scored 23 and had five assists for Collins. Darrion Sifore added 14 points and Lionel Wilson had 10 points and four rebounds.

No. 20 Kenwood 86, Bowen 49: Mike Irvin wins his head coaching debut. JJ Taylor scored 33 and Darrin Ames added 21.

Minooka 50, Plainfield Central 48: I’ll bet you had no clue that the Indians are 5-1. Jake Faron scored 15 in this one and Ricky Hill finished with 10, including the game-winner.

No. 12 Rolling Meadows 61, Buffalo Grove 53: Burger boy Max Christie had 18 points and 13 rebounds for the undefeated Mustangs.

Hyde Park 66, Crane 42: Malik Jenkins had 14 points and five rebounds and Davontae Hall scored 14. The Thunderbirds are a team to keep an eye on. Soph Cam Williford added eight points and eight assists.