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Michael O’Brien’s high school basketball notebook

Highlights, scores and analysis from the top games of Friday, Feb. 5, 2021

Maine South’s Sean Gallery (12) moves the ball past Loyola’s Ben Moser (11).
Maine South’s Sean Gallery (12) moves the ball past Loyola’s Ben Moser (11).
Kirsten Stickney/For the Sun-Times

There was a bit of stir earlier this week when Maine South tweeted out its basketball schedule.

The thing was massive, with 22 games scheduled in just five weeks. It definitely threw some people, who questioned if that kind of effort was wise during a global pandemic.

Hawks coach Tony Lavorato has a plan.

“Some people were haters, some people loved it,” Lavorato said. “It was a baseball mentality schedule. My goal is 16 games. If we can play 16 games I will be happy. Any more than 16, great.”

Friday afternoon there was a COVID-19 positive test in the Maine South girls basketball program. They were supposed to play a doubleheader at Loyola with the boys team. That was canceled.

It’s exactly what Lavorato was worried about.

“The girls just lost four games,” Lavorato said. “We want to try to get those 16 in. So if we have to cancel, boom we cross it out and we are moving on. No rescheduling. We have four games a week.”

Read all about Maine South’s season-opening win against Loyola...

Friday’s top games

Yorkville Christian 85, Sandwich 33: I’m really interested to see how good the Mustangs are this season. They were so young last season and played such a high-quality schedule. Jaden Schutt led with 23 points and Tyler Burrows scored 22.

Northridge 63, Schaumburg Christian 40: Ok, I always knew that Northridge was a quality basketball program. I’m not a moron, most of the time. But I admit I was surprised that the Knights wound up as the No. 31 winningest program in the entire area the last decade. Wow. We clearly need to pay more attention to Northridge. Sean Flood led the way tonight with 31 points.

Tuscola 58, Warrensburg-Latham 38: Tuscola is the notebook’s team this season. Just makes sense after we started the season down there. The Warriors are 3-0 and play at Shiloh tomorrow.

Lincoln-Way Central 64, Lincoln-Way East 55: So it turns out there is one huge benefit to games happening before I actually finalize the rankings. Some things get solved. I knew I was ranking one of these teams, but hadn’t fully decided which one. I was impressed with what I saw from the Griffins last season and the Knights return their entire starting lineup from last year. Based on tonight it looks like Central will get the preseason nod. Nick Tingley scored 21 and James Ogrodnik added 18.

Saturday morning update: I was informed that Lincoln-Way Central actually had 4 of its top 7 returning players opt out of the season. That’s what I get for being behind on the Twitter previes. Sean Curran (Clemson, recruit for golf), Ryan Kraft (baseball at Indiana) and Matt and Mike Maloney (baseball). But they are clearly surviving just fine...

Indian Creek 79, Genoa-Kingston 55: The Timberwolves win so often that you are starting to get familiar with these names, aren’t you? Drew Gaston scored 22, Cam Russell 16, Davis Stryker 13 and Michael Lampson 10.

Glenbrook South 57, Lake Forest 41: This is the most impressive win of the night. Both were likely preseason Super 25 teams. I expect the Scouts to be pretty darn good, so that is impressive margin. We probably should take into account that it was Lake Forest’s first game. That’s likely a major factor right now.