Sunday, March 13, 2011
By Phil Brozynski
Simeon sophomore sensation Jabari Parker had zero points, three rebounds, one assist and a steal Friday against Lyons at the Class 4A Argo Sectional final.
Luckily, the Wolverines have a few other players on the roster to whom they can turn.
Sophomore guard Kendrick Nunn came off the bench to score 16 points, including nine in the second quarter, to rally Simeon from a 22-12 deficit, and the Wolverines made 12-of-14 free throws in the final 1:55 to turn back the Lions 64-51.
Darien Walker had 11 points, Steve Taylor added nine and Tywon Pinkney and Rashawn McElrath each had eight points for Simeon (27-2), which closed the game on a 10-2 run after a basket by Mark Sewall (15 points) had Lyons within 54-49 with 1:35 remaining.
They were really keying on Jabari tonight, Simeon coach Robert Smith said. Some other guys were open to make plays. All Jabari wants to do is win. Thats what our program is all about.
Lyons used just six players to counter the defending state champions, and just four scored. But the Lions had the Wolverines backpedaling early, sprinting to a 10-point lead on a basket by Dylan Fiedler (15 points) with 7:04 remaining in the first half.
I had complete and total confidence that we would play well even with our leading scorer and rebounder (Nick Zeisloft) on the bench, Lyons coach Tom Sloan said. The guys were looking forward to the opportunity to show that we are for real.
Lyons hung around even after Simeon used a 15-4 run to wipe out a 36-33 deficit early in the third quarter. The Lions had a chance to pull within four with 1:10 left after a steal, but Eric Powers was wide left on a three-pointer from the corner.
Its just sad that people are going to look at the final score and think we got drilled, Sloan said. This game was nip-and-tuck. It could have gone either way. We just did not make a shot and turned the ball over at the end and they made a lot of free throws.
Powers led Lyons (26-3) with 16 points, and Spencer Mahoney rounded out the Lions scoring with five points.
Last year we were able to jump on them early, Smith said. But this team was much better than last years. It seemed like they were making every shot in that first quarter. Nunn gave us some energy off the bench. It was a team effort.