LUTHER NORTH

LUTHER NORTH TOURNAMENT

THURSDAY RESULTS
BLUE POOL

Jones College Prep 66, Mather 51

Gordon 56, Chicago Academy 44

GOLD POOL

Taft 59, Maine East 37
Luther North 58, Guerin 34

POOL PLAY STANDINGS
BLUE

Gordon 3-0
Jones 2-1
Chgo Academy 1-2
Mather 0-3

GOLD POOL
Taft 3-0
Maine East 2-1
Luther North 1-2
Guerin 0-3

FRIDAY PAIRINGS

Mather-Guerin 3:00 PM
Chicago Academy-Luther North 4:30 PM

THIRD PLACE
Jones-Maine East 6:00 PM
CHAMPIONSHIP
Gordon-Taft 7:30 PM

LUTHER NORTH

GORDON TO FACE TAFT IN LUTHER NORTH FINALS

By John Montgomery

A tournament matchup between neighborhood schools Gordon(6-5) and Taft(9-5) might not garner as much attention or interest as Simeon-Warren, De La Salle-St Ignatius, or Proviso East-New Trier, However, the finals of the Luther North tournament will be just as exciting and intense because there are two area schools playing for more than bragging rights. It will be must see TV tonight.
Gordon is hoping to win the Luther North title for the first time in school history after beating Chicago Academy(8-4) 56-44.
“It’s a great feeling(to play in the finals),” Gordon head coach Shay Boyle admitted after the win. “That’s why we came here. We want to play for a championship.”
The Rams are rolling with four straight wins after losing three straight games in the Catholic League.
Taft is seeking its ninth title after topping Maine East(4-8) 59-37.
“It would mean a lot(to win at Luther North again),” Taft head coach Brett Nishibayashi said. “That was certainly the objective and it was the goal when we started the tournament. We wanted four victories.”
Luther North decided to have an eight-team event with pool play. Gordon won the Blue pool while Taft captured the Gold pool with three victories over Luther North, Guerin, and Maine East.
The Rams reached the finals after beating Jones, Mather, and Chicago Academy.
Gordon turned in another solid effort on defense. After holding Mather to only 22 points, the Rams limited Chicago Academy to only basket in the first half as the Cougars missed 40-of-54 shots at the basket.
The Rams nearly blew a 15-point lead in the final quarter. Chicago Academy cut the deficit to eight points before Gordon connected on four foul shots to seal the victory.
“The clock ran out,” Boyle stated after the win.
“I didn’t think we could comeback and win,” Chicago Academy head coach Randy Stonewall. “I just wanted us to play hard and take our time possession by possession. I’m extremely proud of them. We lost the game. My guys kept fighting. That’s what they did.”
Dave Andrews led a balanced attack for the Rams with 17 points including five three-pointers. Devanchey Bell came off the bench to score 13 points while guards Jerry Davis and Mahlike Graham added eight points each. Junior Sam Rarick finished the night with nine points.
“Dave Andrews is one of the best shooters I’ve seen in the state,” Stonewall said.
Darrick Scott led Chicago Academy with 18 points and 13 rebounds before fouling out.
Chicago Academy is currently leading the Blue North section.
These two teams could see each other again in the Class 2A state playoffs.
Taft had an easier time against Maine East as Tim Reamer led the Eagles with 20 points.
Now, it will be Gordon’s three-guard offense of Graham, Davis, and Andrews against Taft’s twin towers Reamer and Siudut in the finals at Luther North.
Reamer and Siudut have combined for 76 points in three wins while the Rams have been led by the shooting of Andrews who has 13 three-pointers in three games.
“We don’t have to do anything special,” Taft head coach Brett Nishibayashi said. “We have to play our basketball game. Gordon is a good team. They have some good players.
It could be a memorable matchup.

Luther North Tournament Wednesday Results

For more of Jack Lydon's images of the game please go to our Facebook page,

GOLD POOL

Taft 78, Guerin 56
Maine East 51 , Luther North 44

BLUE POOL

Jones College Prep 57, Chicago Academy 48
Gordon 53, Mather 22

THURSDAY’S SCHEDULE

BLUE POOL

Jones College Prep vs. Mather 3:00 PM
Chicago Academy vs Gordon 4:30 PM

GOLD POOL

Maine East vs Taft 6:00 PM
Guerin vs Luther North 7:30 PM

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Gordon Tech Beats Mather in opening game 53-22

Maybe former Weber star Kevin Geredine can change the fortunes of Public League basketball on the North side. Geredine is currently the assistant basketball coach at Mather.

Foreman, Taft, Steinmetz, and Von Steuben have advanced to the city semifinals, but no team from this area has won the Public League championship since Roosevelt in 1952. In fact, the last time a team from the North side advanced to the championship game was Lake View in 1954.
Mather head varsity basketball coach Glen Heffernan resigned after posting 50 wins over the past two seasons.
Geredine is trying to help the Rangers recover from a 2-8 start.
Gordon(5-5) beat Mather(2-8) 53-22 on Wednesday night at the Luther North tournament. The Rangers struggled in the loss missing their first seven shots at the basket and finished the contest shooting only 7-of-42.
Geredine played at Weber while Gordon head coach Shay Boyle was on the sophomore squad for the Red Horde.
“He’s got a great basketball mind,” Boyle said of his former classmate. “He has great experience. He’s worked hard to get back into the game. He’s a wonderful guy. He’s one of my favorite high school players ever. He’s one of the most underrated players in state history when he was at Weber.”
“I’m just trying to get a little more experience,” admitted Geredine who currently works as a barber.
Boyle enjoyed the days when Weber faced Gordon in Catholic League play.
“There was nothing like a Weber-Gordon game on a Friday night,” said Boyle who played at Weber and was an assistant basketball coach at Loyola University after graduating from Notre Dame.
Mather has six underclassmen as the Rangers fell behind 23-3 after the opening quarter and trailed 44-8 at halftime.
“I wouldn’t say embarrassed(by the loss),” stated Geredine after the loss. “I would say it’s lack of experience(with our team). We have a group of guys that haven’t played high school basketball. They played in grammar school. We are still trying to find our identity.”
“We played a tremendous defensive first half,” Boyle said after the win.
The Rangers lost all five starters from a 25-win club so some rebuilding was expected.
Gordon is on the verge of playing for the championship at Luther North after beating Mather. Jerry Davis led the Rams with 11 points while Devanchey Bell added 10 points for Gordon who made 19-of-40 shots.
The Rams need a victory over Chicago Academy(8-3) to advance to the finals on Friday night against Taft(8-5) or Maine East(4-7).
“Tonight is a huge night,” said Boyle. “We always play well in tournaments. I think we are 10-3 all-time (at Luther North). We love playing in this gym. We are not looking forward to anything else but playing Chicago Academy.”
“I think they have a pretty good team,” Geredine said in appaising the Rams. “They are disciplined.”
Gordon won the Consolation title at Luther North last season.
“We have a young team,” Geredine said of the Rangers who have won the Luther North tournament the last two years. “I think the problem is they don’t trust each other. We play hard. We don’t trust each other-that’s the bottom line.”
The bottom line for the Rams is just find a way to beat Chicago Academy.

GORDON

GORDON BEATS JONES AT LUTHER NORTH

By John Montgomery

Dave Andrews was one of the first grammar school players who decided to attend Gordon four years ago after Shay Boyle was hired to become the head varsity basketball coach of the Rams. Andrews, who has been a three-year starter, scored a game-high 21 points to lead Gordon(4-5) past Jones(9-2) 57-56 in the opening round of the Luther North tournament.
“Gordon was the best option for me,” admitted Andrews who had seven three-point baskets in the win over the Eagles on Tuesday afternoon. “My local school was Senn. My grades weren’t the best. My dad was really impressed with Gordon.”
“If he’s open, I have told anyone who will listen that he is the best shooter in Illinois,” Gordon head coach Shay Boyle said after the win.
Although Andrews had a fine performance with 21 points, Gordon prevailed on a basket by Jerry Davis with one second left after the Rams had blown a seven-point lead in the final quarter.
“My coach told me to just take my time,” Davis said on his game winning hoop.
Jones rallied to take a 54-52 lead after a free throw and basket by DeAndre Taylor.
The momentum of this game might have changed after a technical foul was called on Andrews. The Eagles couldn’t take advantage as they missed three free throws.
Jones would miss eight foul shots on the night.
“The kid from Gordon(Davis) made a nice shot,” Jones head coach Frank Griseto said. Ultimately, the game was free throws. Tight game you have to make your free throws.”
Devanchey Bell gave Gordon a 55-54 lead with 1:51 remaining on a three-point play.
Jones took its last lead on a bucket by Courtney Copeland with 1:37 left.
Jones tried unsuccessfully to run out the clock as they committed a costly turnover giving Gordon a chance to win the contest.
Davis missed a layup to the hoop with 26 seconds left while Jauquis Buckman missed a free throw with 25.5 seconds left for the Eagles.
Davis made his game-winning shot after Gordon called timeout to actually setup a play for teammate Mahlike Graham. Davis took a pass and drove to the basket and hit a jump shot with one second left on the clock.
“Coach Boyle called this game our Super Bowl,” admitted Andrews who played in grammar school tournaments at Luther North. “If we really wanted to win this tournament, we have got to win tonight. This was a big game. Jones is probably the best team in our pool.”
Bell also had a big game for Gordon scoring 15 points in a reserve role while Davis added 11 points.
Taylor and Copeland combined for 36 points as Jones made 23-of-43 shots.
Andrews had four three-pointers in the opening quarter as the Rams led 19-17 after the opening quarter and 29-28 at halftime.
Gordon will face two-time defending champ Mather tonight.
In other games, Chicago Academy(8-2), who is leading the Blue North section, began the tourney by beating Mather 47-44.
In evening action, Aaron Shannon scored 25 points to lead Maine East(3-7) past Guerin for the second time this season 49-43.
Taft(7-5) closed out the opening day of games by topping Luther North 67-44 as Tim Reamer led the Eagles with 15 points.

Lane wins league opener against Steinmetz 50-31

To say the basketball team at Lane (5-3, 1-0) was sluggish for three quarters in its Red North opener against Steinmetz (4-3, 0-1) would be an understatement. The Indians would able to build a 12-point lead despite 30 missed shots at the basket and 15 turnovers.

Lane started the final quarter by scoring 13 unanswered points to seal the section opener on the road at Steinmetz.

“In the beginning, we weren’t focused,” Lane guard Christian Aranez admitted after the win. “We weren’t playing Lane Tech basketball. After the third quarter, I told the guys let’s be the team we know we can be.”

Lane didn’t arrive until 4 pm while Steinmetz head coach Brad Dowling benched three starters for missing practice. Another factor was only one referee showed up to officiate this contest.

Lane led only 17-11 at halftime despite scoring the game’s first nine points on three treys.

“I was thrilled to be down only six at halftime,” Steinmetz head coach Brad Dowling stated after the loss.

Aranez has gone from being Lane’s most improved player to maybe its most important as the team’s point guard this season. Aranez would be the game’s most valuable player after his performance on Tuesday. Aranez keyed the fourth quarter surge with three three-pointers.

“He won the coaches award last year,”Lane head coach Nick Logalbo said. “He’s the ultimate team player. It couldn’t happen to a better guy. He became our captain this year. What he lacks in height he makes up for it with heart.”

Aranez didn’t seem affected by the bus trip. The senior scored a game-high 15 points including two three-point hoops in the opening quarter.

“I don’t think we got off the bus until the fourth quarter,”Logalbo joked after the game.

Aranez led Lane with 15 points as Logalbo used 14 players and seven players contributed offensively.

“(Aranez) makes my job easier,” Logalbo said. “He’s going to be a coach one day. He’s the heart and soul of this team. He runs the show for us.”

Lane really won this game on defense forcing 24 turnovers as Steinmetz shot 11-of-43 on its home court against Lane’s man-to-man defense.

Lane made 7-of-15 shots in the fourth quarter.

“The effort was good for the most part,” Dowling said on the loss.”The hope there being down 12 points was to get it under single digits. We start off the fourth quarter on a 4-0 run it’s a game. They started on a 4-0 run and it’s almost garbage time.”

Frank Bland led Steinmetz with 10 points and 18 rebounds before fouling out.

Loyola Tops Gordon

Gordon was hoping for better results on the basketball court this season in Catholic League play. The Rams were 0-10 last year, but head coach Shay Boyle was hoping the addition of St Pat’s transfer Mahlike Graham and a healthy Jerry Davis would pay dividends this season.

Loyola(3-2,1-0) dealt Gordon its 22nd straight loss in the Catholic League despite 24 points from Davis. The Ramblers beat the Rams (2-3,0-1) 69-61 as football players Peter Pujals and Rich Wehman made their season debuts for Loyola.
Pujals and Wehman returned to the lineup and combined for 40 points after losing the Class 8A football championship against Bolingbrook. Pujals had 16 of his team-high 23 points in the first half while Wehman scored 13 points in the second half to help Loyola pull away and earn the eight-point win at home.
“It’s frustrating,” Boyle admitted on his team’s struggles in the Catholic League. “We’ve made a lot of strides. I tell these guys every day in practice it’s the best conference in the United States. It makes us better. We’re stronger for the state playoffs. We’re one of the only Catholic League teams who won back-to-back regionals(in 2009 and 2010). This schedule prepares us for postseason.”
“It was hard the first few days at practice,” Pujals said after the win at Loyola. “I thought I would take my anger out on this game. I owe it to the basketball team(to play hard). I can’t be complaining about football. I just try to do my job.”
“You expected a lot of rust,” said Loyola head coach Tom Livatino. I don’t know if they used rust-o-leum. There wasn’t that much rust. Both of those guys bring a tremendous amount of leadership. Peter and Rich are special kids.”
Loyola did a solid job of defending Gordon’s Dave Andrews. Andrews scored 12 points in the opening quarter and failed to score again until the final 90 seconds of the contest.
The Ramblers scored only four baskets in the final quarter, but sealed the win with 11 free throws.
James Clarke added 15 points for the Ramblers who forced Gordon into 20 turnovers.
Graham in his Catholic League debut was limited to only seven points.
Davis scored 15 points in the fourth quarter as Andrews finished with 17 points.
Loyola led 33-31 at the half.
Both teams played without their leading scorers who were missing due to injury.
Gordon will host St. Ignatius next Friday night.
“Pujals and Wehman were the difference tonight,” added Boyle.

FOOTBALL WRAPUP

MT CARMEL WINS PREP BOWL

By John Montgomery

The high school football season began with Mt. Carmel(10-4) beating Simeon(10-4) at Soldier Field in August. The season ended with Bolingbrook(13-1) beating Loyola (13-1) 21-17 at Champaign in the Class 8A championship game.
In our area, the two biggest stories occurred off the field. Gordon(5-5) forfeited to Leo(5-6) in the Catholic League playoffs while Lake View linebacker Ashley Diaz missed the season due to health issues.
In the Prep Bowl at Soldier Field, Brandon Greer rushed for 221 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Caravan to their 11th city championship. Simeon fell short despite 205 yards passing from backup quarterback Elcee Burke.
Mt Carmel has won 11 Prep Bowls and 10 state football championships. This past year saw Mt Carmel head coach Frank Lenti become the state’s winningest man on a high school sideline in Illinois. Lenti will enter 2012 with 313 wins and only 58 defeats.
In our neighborhood, Gordon made the Catholic League playoffs despite suiting up only 22 players. The Rams were hoping to advance to the state football playoffs.
Leo beat Gordon 39-19 at Luther North in an embarrassing loss for the Rams during section play.
The Rams were ready for the rematch as they stunned Leo 14-8 limiting Keith Harris to 23 yards on 12 carries and more importantly no trips into the end zone at Luther North.
The thrill of victory turned into the agony of controversial defeat six days later as Gordon forfeited for playing two freshmen in the win over Leo. Leo re-entered the playoff and was beaten by Hales(7-5).
Under Catholic League rules, freshman are ineligible to participate against Catholic League opponents. Freshmen can play in the state playoffs. This rule might be changed after the outcry over this forfeit.
On the field, Lane(3-6) endured its third straight losing season. Taft(7-3) won the Big Shoulders section over Foreman(7-3) and Mather(6-3).
Diaz missed the season for Lake View(7-2), who won the section title after losing season opener to Gordon 54-0.
Eventually Mt Carmel would meet and beat Simeon in the Prep Bowl.
Most people still don’t think it’s fair for the Catholic League and Public League teams that lose in the state playoffs to re-enter Prep Bowl playoffs.
In the state playoffs, could Maine South(10-1) win a fourth straight title? The Hawks were upset by Stevenson(9-3) in the second round of the Class 8A tournament. Maine South could be a factor again in 2012 with Matt Alvitti returning for his senior year at quarterback.
Fans, coaches, and media were anticipating a rematch between Loyola(13-1) and Maine South in the semifinals of the 8A playoffs. Maine South had beaten Loyola in back-to-back years enroute to state championships.
Stevenson stunned Maine South so the next best matchup would Loyola-Bolingbrook in the title game at Champaign.
Bolingbrook(13-1) won its first state football title beating Loyola 21-17 on Saturday to close the book on football 2011. Junior quarterback Aaron Bailey had two touchdowns and 149 yards rushing to lead the Raiders. A dramatic game despite the weather conditions and five turnovers by Bolingbrook.
Another game that would be interesting to spectators was Montini clashing with Joliet Catholic in the Class 5A championship. Montini(12-2) beat Joliet Catholic 29-28 in the 2009 Class 5A final.
The rematch wasn’t a disappointment as Montini won its third straight state football title 70-45 over the Hilltoppers(11-3), who have won 13 state football championships. Montini’s Jordan Westerkamp caught five touchdown passes from quarterback John Rhode. Westerkamp, who will attend Nebraska, had 11 receptions for 331 yards. The Broncos overcame a stellar performance by Joliet Catholic junior Ty Isaac. Issac rushed a state record 515 yards and six touchdowns in the loss.
Dakota(12-2), Morrison(13-1), Aurora Christian(13-1), Rochester(12-2), Prairie Ridge(13-1), and Rockford Boylan(14-0) left Champaign with state football championships.
Now, my choices for Player and Coach of the Year. The Player of the Year in our area is Gordon quarterback Julian Russell. Russell finished his senior year with the Rams by rushing for 763 yards and 15 touchdowns. Isaac is my pick for Player of the Year in the Chicago area. Isaac ran for 51 touchdowns and 2,629 yards.
My selection for Coach of the Year in our area of Chicago is Taft’s Matt Walsh. Walsh has revived the program at Taft winning the section title this past season while making appearances in the state playoffs in back-to-back seasons.
The choice for Coach of the Year in Chicago area is Prairie Ridge’s Chris Schrempf. Prairie Ridge won the Class 6A title over the weekend by beating Peoria Richwoods. The school located in Crystal Lake won its first state football title after losing in the semifinals in 2010 to Rockford Boylan.
More high school sports next week including Gordon’s Catholic League opener against Loyola in basketball.

SIMEON WINS SIXTH PUBLIC LEAGUE FOOTBALL TITLE

SIMEON WINS SIXTH PUBLIC LEAGUE FOOTBALL TITLE

By John Montgomery
Six titles is super accomplishment for Simeon’s football team.
Simeon(10-3) wanted to win the school’s first state football championship next weekend in Champaign. The Wolverines will try to win the Prep Bowl for the first time after beating Harper(10-3) 36-8 at Gately Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
“We did set our goal early in the year(of winning state),” Simeon quarterback Robert Gregory stated. “We still have something to do that hasn’t been done at Simeon. Right now, our goal is winning the Prep Bowl.”
Simeon, who is 0-5 in the Prep Bowl, will face Mt. Carmel(9-4) for the second time on Friday. Mt. Carmel has won 10 state football titles and 10 Prep Bowls. The Caravan beat Brother Rice(8-5) 39-6 to win the Catholic League playoff championship.
Mt. Carmel began this football season by topping Simeon 23-14 at Soldier Field.
Both teams rebounded from losses in the state playoffs. Lockport (7-4)beat Simeon in the opening round while Bolingbrook(12-1) beat the Caravan.
Gregory showed why he is one of the best quarterbacks in the state rushing for 124 yards and two touchdowns. Gregory, who will attend Arkansas, has been in and out of the lineup this season with an ankle injury.
“Robert Gregory is a great quarterback at the high school level,” Simeon head coach Dante Culbreath.
“Robert Gregory is a great football player,” Harper head coach Maris Carroll said after the loss. “He is going to be recognized. You are going to see him in the pros or go great things in college.”
Simeon behind its offensive line rushed for 262 yards while limiting Harper to only 117 yards rushing as both teams attempted only 11 passes on a windy day at Gately.
The difference in this contest may have been Simeon’s which stopped Harper twice from scoring including a goal line stand in the third quarter.
The Wolverines built a 21-8 advantage on the new scoreboard at Gately.
Simeon would eventually put the game away in the fourth quarter to seal its sixth CPS title. The Wolverines scored two touchdowns in the last 1:47 as Darell Thomas scored on a 45-yard run and Devon Anthony added a 30-yard interception return with eight seconds left.
Gregory scored on a 58-yard run, but Harper responded with a 67-yard scoring drive that was capped on a five yard run by Antorvio Barton.
Simeon’s defense took control of the contest forcing the Cardinals to have four straight series when they ran only three plays without registering a first down.
Shaquille Joyner scored on a three-yard run to close the first half before Gregory began the second half for Simeon by scoring a one-yard run to give Simeon a 21-6 lead.
Now, the rematch between rivals Mt. Carmel and Simeon at Gately on Friday.
“We are going to be up for the game,” added Culbreath. “We weren’t healthy for the first time. We are more healthy at this time of the year.”
“We did have a good game against Simeon in week one,” Mt. Carmel head coach Frank Lenti said. “This is going to be week 14 and we are two different teams.”