Preps Talk

Five High School Basketball Shootouts to Watch in 2015-16


Five High School Basketball Shootouts to Watch in 2015-16

One of the best things about high school basketball in Illinois is the amount of high-profile events that go on during the regular season. Conference rivalries are always fun to monitor, but for the fan who wants to see a few games in the same day, shootouts and showcase events are the way to go.

Here's a look at five of the premier, non-holiday events coming up this season. Be sure to mark down these on your calendar.

Team Rose Shootout at Moraine Valley College (Nov. 29)

The Team Rose Shootout has become one of the marquee events of the early portion of the season and the event features six more solid games of action in 2015. @CSNPreps Basketball Power Rankings teams like Joliet West (against Foreman), Marian Catholic (against Westinghouse) and Curie (against Proviso West) headline the event while a few Public League teams with big aspirations will be in the field as well. Richards battling Providence-St. Mel begins action at 10:10 a.m. while Seton vs. Von Steuben and Crete-Monee facing Farragut rounds out the event.

Chicago Elite Classic at UIC Pavilion (Dec. 4-5)

The best national showcase in the area, this year's Chicago Elite Classic is headlined by a matchup of city superpowers as Simeon battles Whitney Young to close out the nine-game, two-day event. Other great local games include Fenwick opening against Oak Park-River Forest and Morgan Park taking on Evanston. Besides those three tremendous local games, Chicago basketball fans will get to watch a couple of future McDonald's All-Americans as Duke commit Jayson Tatum and Chaminade (Mo.) battle Miller Grove (Ga.) and DeMatha Catholic and Washington commit Markelle Fultz plays St. Vincent-St. Mary (Oh.). Marian Catholic has a tough battle against Mater Dei out of California while Riverside-Brookfield gets a shot at Gonzaga College High School out of Washington D.C. East St. Louis also plays Larkin and Maine South plays Loyola Academy in some matchups of Illinois powers to round out two great days of basketball.

When Sides Collide at Glenbard West (Jan. 24)

Joe Henricksen of the City/Suburban Hoops Report has done a great job putting this event together the last few seasons and this season's event is no different. The matchup between Fenwick and Riverside-Brookfield has two teams with state title aspirations while Evanston and Whitney Young will have a lot of young talent on the floor. Glenbard East and Bradley-Bourbonnais is also an enticing game with both teams returning much of their rotations and Champaign Central coming up to face Kenwood means local fans can see talented Central sophomore Tim Finke.

Bank of O'Fallon Shootout (Feb. 6)

If you're going to travel south to see a shootout this season, this is probably the one to check out. Last year's event included a high-level game between Belleville Althoff and St. Joseph and the two teams eventually met in Peoria for the Class 3A state championship. This season, both Althoff and St. Joseph are back while Kenwood, Morgan Park, Hinsdale South and DeKalb also join the field.

Here's the full schedule of games:

  • Columbia vs. Peoria Richwoods, 10:30 a.m.
  • Nashville vs. St Joseph-Ogden, noon
  • Centralia vs. Hinsdale South, 1:30 p.m.
  • O’Fallon vs. DeKalb, 4:15 p.m.
  • CBC vs. Westchester St. Joseph, 5:45 p.m.
  • Hazelwood Central vs. Morgan Park, 7:15 p.m.
  • Althoff vs. Chicago Kenwood, 8:45 p.m.

City-Suburban Showdown at Lyons-Township High School (Feb. 20)

One the best nights of high school basketball all season, in-part because it's late in the season and teams are really clicking right before the playoffs. This season's doubleheader starts with a couple of top-10 teams as Riverside-Brookfield battles Morgan Park. While the Mustangs are used to big-game environments, this will be a great test for the veteran Bulldogs. In the main event, Simeon takes on Evanston as Wildkit junior Nojel Eastern and his teammates face one of the deepest teams in the state.

Public League champion Simeon remains clear No. 1 in latest Preps Power Rankings

Public League champion Simeon remains clear No. 1 in latest Preps Power Rankings

The Class 1A and 2A regionals begin this week and the regular season is finishing up for every other team in the state. We're getting that much closer to state titles being decided in Peoria. Simeon remains the clear No. 1 in the latest Power Rankings after beating No. 4 Whitney Young and No. 2 Orr by double digits on the way to earning a third straight Public League Playoff title, while a couple of familiar faces are back in the tail end of the rankings.

1. Simeon (25-3, 9-0) (1) -- Simeon stays at No. 1 after winning the Public League Playoffs for the third consecutive year. The Wolverines have now defeated teams No. 2 through No. 6 in the Preps Power Rankings for a 6-0 record on the season in which the average margin of victory has been 14.5 points per game. The clear No. 1 in the state of Illinois, Simeon has the week off before the Class 4A playoffs.

2. Orr (22-4, 9-0) (2) -- Orr put up a good fight but they ultimately fell short to No. 1 Simeon in the Public League Playoff title game. The Spartans did gain revenge on No. 3 Curie, however, with a big semifinal win on Friday. Orr has to forget the title loss ahead of the Class 2A Playoffs that begin this week as the Spartans try to repeat as champions.

3. Curie (23-4, 8-1) (3) -- The Condors have only lost to No. 1 and No. 2 when it comes to in-state losses as they remain one of the most complete and balanced teams in the state. Curie has the week off before the IHSA Playoffs.

4. Whitney Young (22-7, 7-2) (4) -- Whitney Young earned a huge quarterfinal win over Morgan Park before falling to Simeon in the Public League Playoff semifinals. The Dolphins also have the week off before they attempt to repeat as Class 4A champions. 

5. Morgan Park (18-9, 7-2) (5) Disappointing result for the Mustangs as they lost on a buzzer-beater in the Public League Playoffs to Whitney Young. Defending champions in Class 3A, the Mustangs will rest this week before the playoffs begin.

6. Fenwick (18-7, 8-0) (8) -- The Friars earned two wins during the week as they beat Marmion while also getting a huge conference road win at Loyola. Fenwick will battle Taft during the week.

7. New Trier (22-3, 8-1) (9) -- New Trier had one of the best weeks of any team in the area as they picked up wins over Maine South and Evanston. Now the leaders in the rugged CSL South, the Trevians have some more tough games against Niles North and Glenbrook North this week. 

8. Evanston (20-5, 8-2) (6) -- Evanston's red-hot recent play was finally slowed down as they fell to rival New Trier. The Wildkits will try to bounce back when they play Vernon Hills in a Central Suburban crossover this week.

9. Oak Park-River Forest (21-5, 12-0) (11) -- The Huskies finished the West Suburban Silver season unbeaten following wins over York and Proviso West. OPRF gets a great test right before the playoffs when they face Hinsdale South in the West Suburban championship game.

10. Benet (21-4) (6-1) (12) -- Two wins for the Redwings this week when they beat Joliet Catholic and Stevenson. Things aren't easy for Benet this week as they head to Marian Catholic before hosting Carmel in two tough ESCC games. 

11. West Aurora (19-4, 8-0) (13) -- The winning streak is now 11 for the Blackhawks after beating South Elgin. West Aurora will play Bartlett and crosstown rival East Aurora this week as they try to keep the momentum going into the playoffs. 

12. Marist (23-4, 6-2) (15) -- Marist picked up a double-digit win over St. Patrick during the week as they prepare for the Class 4A draw. The RedHawks will have an ESCC game against Marian Central this week. 

13. Niles North (22-4, 5-4) (8) -- The Vikings fell to CSL South rival Maine South and followed that up with an overtime win over a tough Wisconsin team in St. Catherine's. The Vikings get a crack at conference leader New Trier this week before playing Maine West in a tough Central Suburban crossover. 

14. Marian Catholic (20-4, 5-3) (16) -- Three wins for the Spartans during the week as they knocked off Nazareth, Rich Central and Marian Central. Marian Catholic gets a tough test this week when they host Benet in its final ESCC game.

15. Naperville North (23-2, 14-1) (17) -- The Huskies have won eight straight games as they clinched at least a share of the DuPage Valley Conference with a win over Waubonsie Valley this week. Naperville North hosts Wheaton-Warrenville South this week to decide the DVC title.

16. DePaul Prep (20-6, 5-3) (19) -- Picking up a convincing double-digit win over Mount Carmel, the Rams got back on track after the loss to Brother Rice. DePaul Prep will host Montini during the week as they prepare for Class 3A. 

17. Loyola (21-6, 5-3) (10) -- Tough recent stretch for the Ramblers as they fell to St. Joseph and Fenwick to fall out of the Catholic League Blue race. Loyola hosts Steinmetz for a tune-up this week. 

18. Hillcrest (21-5, 13-0) (21) -- Hillcrest survived a tight win over T.F. North before winning convincingly against Oak Forest. The Hawks have the week off as they prep for Class 3A. 

19. Leo (19-5, 8-0) (22) -- Finishing the regular season with a big win over Marmion, the Lions will be one of the area teams to watch in the Class 2A playoffs as they are in the Marshall Regional. 

20. Homewood-Flossmoor (16-6, 7-1) (23) -- Another huge win for Homewood-Flossmoor as the Vikings took down Bolingbrook to keep a lead in the SouthWest Suburban Blue. Homewood-Flossmoor goes on the road this week to battle Sandburg and Lockport. 

21. Hinsdale South (20-5, 10-2) (24) -- The Hornets stayed hot with wins over Addison Trail and Proviso East as they clinched the West Suburban Gold. Hinsdale South has a tough battle against Oak Park-River Forest in the West Suburban championship game this week. 

22. St. Viator (22-5, 8-0) (25) -- The Lions picked up some wins against Carmel and Bartlett. St. Viator will try to close out the ESCC with an undefeated record when they play Nazareth this week. 

23. Bolingbrook (17-6, 5-3) (18) -- Bolingbrook fell out of the SouthWest Suburban Blue conference race when they lost to Homewood-Flossmoor. The Raiders still have some tough games to close out the regular season when they play Lincoln-Way East and Stagg.

24. Maine South (20-7, 6-4) (NR) -- Huge win for Maine South as they knocked off Niles North after losing to New Trier in overtime earlier in the week. The Hawks close out the regular season with a Central Suburban Crossover against Highland Park.

25. Willowbrook (22-5, 9-3) (NR) -- Willowbrook is back in the rankings by earning three double-digit wins over Morton, Leyden and Downers South. The Warriors have only lost to ranked teams like West Aurora and Hinsdale South lately as they've been playing well. 

Five top-25 matchups highlight loaded episode of High School Lites

Five top-25 matchups highlight loaded episode of High School Lites

High School Lites had five matchups between top-25 teams on Friday night as the Public League Playoff semifinals and big matchups in the CSL South, Catholic League Blue and SouthWest Suburban Blue took shape.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for the latest news and scores for IHSA basketball.

Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Palatine's Eduardo Orozco

Saint Xavier Team of the Week: Maine West girls basketball


No. 1 Simeon holds off No. 4 Whitney Young

No. 2 Orr gets revenge on No. 3 Curie

No. 9 New Trier takes down No. 6 Evanston

No. 8 Fenwick handles No. 10 Loyola Academy

No. 23 Homewood-Flossmoor rallies past No. 18 Bolingbrook

Oswego East upsets No. 20 Joliet Central

Andrew shuts down Thornridge

Sandburg tops Lockport in OT

Richards runs by Shepard

Maine West captures second straight girls basketball regional title