Michael O’Brien’s high school basketball notebook from the Chicago Elite Classic

Scores and highlights from Saturday’s top games, updating live from the Chicago Elite Classic.

SHARE Michael O’Brien’s high school basketball notebook from the Chicago Elite Classic
North Lawndale’s Jemarje Windfield (3) shoots the ball over Mount Carmel’s Richie Zoller (32).

North Lawndale’s Jemarje Windfield (3) shoots the ball over Mount Carmel’s Richie Zoller (32).

Kirsten Stickney/For the Sun-Times

Here we go, one of the biggest days of the high school basketball season is underway.

And things are very different here at UIC’s Credit Union One Arena on the West Side. There’s a shot clock (likely for the first time in the history of Chicago high school basketball). UIC doesn’t have the high school three-point line on the court either, so they are using the college three-point line.

Chicago Elite Classic highlights

No. 23 Hyde Park 58, U-High 34: Jurrell Baldwin, a 6-6 junior, scored 22 for the Thunderbirds. The H-F transfer has had an excellent start to the season.

No. 18 Mount Carmel 72, North Lawndale 48: Senior DeAndre Craig has led Mount Carmel’s basketball revival over the past few years. The high-scoring guard has elevated the Caravan’s profile and made them a fixture in the Super 25. Expectations are high this year, but Mount Carmel isn’t going to need Craig to score 20 points in every game this season. 

“A little pressure has definitely been taken off me,” Craig said. “Our whole team can score.”

Junior Angelo Ciaravino emerged as a scoring threat last season and is now an even bigger threat. He scored 26 points to lead the Caravan to the win.

Craig scored 20 and Lee Marks, a 6-5 transfer from Homewood-Flossmoor, added 17 points and 13 rebounds.

Senior guard Jemarje Windfield led the Phoenix with 18 points and junior Davarus Spann added 10. 

Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.) 77, No. 8 St. Ignatius 59: The Wolfpack was able to hang with the national powerhouse for about a half. I haven’t looked it up but it feels like Gonzaga comes to the CEC and beats one of our local teams every season. Junior Reggie Ray led St. Ignatius with 19 and senior Jackson Kotecki added 12.

Kendall Gill and Will Perdue were sitting in the front row to watch Gill’s son Phoenix, a promising sophomore at St. Ignatius.

St. Louis Vashon 59, Curie 36: Chikasi Ofoma led the Condors with 11. Vashon is very talented and the Condors were blitzed from the start and never managed to get into a rhythm offensively.

No. 5 Young 54, National Christian (Maryland) 52: What a finish. The Dolphins had the ball with 6 seconds left and the game tied. Dalen Davis passed to Marcus Pigram in the corner. Pigram missed the shot, Daniel Johnson got a hand on it I think but then Davis quickly knocked the ball in just before the buzzer to give Young the win.

Johnson led the Dolphins with 15 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks. Davis and Cole Pruitt each scored nine and Munoz finished with eight.

No. 1 Simeon 86, No. 4 St. Rita 59: The Wolverines totally dominated. Wes Rubin scored 21 and 11 boards. Jalen Griffith scored 24 and Sam Lewis added 18 points and 7 boards. 

Morez Johnson had 16 points and 11 board for the Mustangs.

No. 3 Kenwood 72, Joliet West 66: The Broncos took control with a 14-0 run in the third quarter that wiped out Joliet West’s 11 point lead. Calvin Robins scored 21, 13 in the fouth quarter. Tyler Smith finished with 17 and Dai Dai Ames added 12 for Kenwood.

Sophomore Jeremiah Fears had 17 and Jeremy Fears Jr. scored 16 for Joliet West. Junior Justus McNair added 15 and Matthew Moore had 13 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks.

Saturday’s other top games

Glenbrook South 57, Crystal Lake South 43: The Titans lost a close one at Evanston last night and rebound quickly. Gaven Marr led the way with 13. Cooper LePage scored 18 for the Gators.

Lincoln-Way East 57, Oswego East 54: Upset of the day? The Griffins were expected to be a good team this season and it is happening quickly. Ty Toliver scored 21. Kyle Olagbegi added nine and George Bellevue had seven points and seven rebounds.

Hoffman Estates 53, Naperville Central 31: DJ Wallace scored 20 and the Hawks are off to a 5-1 start.

Kankakee 45, Carbondale 39: The Kays fought off a sluggish start to get the win. Naz Hill scored 12 and Kankakee is off to a 4-0 start.

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