IL Boys 4A semifinals: Bloom vs Simeon

Posted on March 17, 2012. Filed under: Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

March 15, 2012


PEORIA — Bloom did everything right against top-ranked Simeon in the Illinois Boys 4A semifinal contest except win as they fall 45-35.

Coming into the game, the plan was to hold junior phenom Jabari Parker in control… done!

Control the tempo of the game… done!

Pressure the ball in the back court and double whenever possible without leaving a player clearly open… check!

The only uncheck mark left was win…. uncheck!

This is one of the only teams to hold Parker without field goal in the first half of a game.

“They were expecting to play us their way, and they did,” said Parker, who finished with 10 points, five rebounds and four blocks. “They slowed it down and face-guarded me the whole game.”

A bright spot for the Wolverines was junior guard, Kendrick Nunn, who shot pretty well but he covered Bloom’s Donald Moore very well. Nunn was able to keep him from penetrating and having his way, and when he did get in the lane, Parker, Steve Taylor or Kendall Pollard were there to swat his shot away.

Moore’s first successful jumper was a 3-pointer that brought the Blazing Trojans within 36-34 with 2
minutes, 24 seconds remaining.

Then Parker countered on the other end, getting fouled on a mid-range jumper and completing the three-point play to make it 39-34 with 1:58 left.

“I want to give Bloom a lot of credit,” Simeon coach Robert Smith said. “They pushed us to the limit. I thought they out-toughed us. We came up with some key plays down. From my aspect, I really thought we should have lost the game.”

Lejavius Johnson led all players with 18 points. Taylor led the Wolverines with 13, followed by Jaylon Tate, who added 11.

The Wolverines (32-1) will face unbeaten Proviso East (32-0) in a heavyweight Illinois Boys 4A instant classic Saturday night at 8:15 pm.

Simeon and Proviso East have been ranked Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, since the preseason.

“Going into Proviso, I need to find better ways to get my teammates open and get shots for myself,” said Parker. “This is a bad time to be messing up. We just have to tweak some things and get back to the blueprint.”

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IL Boys 4A semifinals: Proviso East vs Rockford Auburn

Posted on March 17, 2012. Filed under: Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


March 15, 2012

PEORIA — Talk about an ugly – scratch that… an unattractive win for Proviso East over Rockford Auburn 55-45 in the Boys 4A semifinals game at Carver Arena. This ended Auburn’s 22-game winning streak dating back to the Pirates’ 75-56 victory over the Knights at the Proviso West tournament on Dec. 29.

The Knights missed its first 10 3-pointers en route to finishing 3-for-16 from downtown and committed, gulp, 24 turnovers and finished the game shooting  17-for-51 from the floor and 8-for-18 from the free-throw line.

“I don’t think we’ve turned it over 24 times in the last five or six years,” Auburn coach Bryan Ott said.

Now don’t think the Pirates played a lot better… they shot 37.9% from the floor, 22.2% from behind the arc and 43.8% from the charity stripe.

Both teams combined for six points, 3-for-21 shooting from the field, 0-for-5 shooting from the line and 17 turnovers in the first quarter.

The two superstars for both team, Auburn’s Fred Van Vleet and Proviso East’s Keith Carter, combined for 3 for 17 for 8 points.

Van Vleet finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds, but had eight turnovers. Carter shot 2-for-12 and had six points and six boards.

Proviso East’s Sterling Brown led the way with a double-double, 13 points, 15 rebounds, followed by teammate, Paris Burns, who added 14 points.

“I just wanted to come out aggressive,” Brown said. “I had seen the guards were struggling, and I wanted to get my team in a rhythm like (the guards) usually do.”

I guess in the end it’s more important to have a date for the BIG dance, than what you drove to get there in….

With their win, and hopefully Simeon defeats Bloom, a dream, maybe even a fantasy matchup will be setup. Just the thought of this matchup made first-year Proviso East coach Donnie Boyce smile.

“I think everybody would like to see that dream matchup,” Boyce said.

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