Preps Talk

Two top-25 matchups headline High School Lites

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

Two top-25 matchups headline High School Lites

High School Lites has plenty of high school basketball action from all over the Chicagoland area this week. We have top-25 matchups in both the Public League and non-conference play in the North suburbs. Some strong South suburban teams and a classic North Shore rivalry also play out on this week's episode. 

Check out the latest edition of High School Lites at 11 p.m. on Friday night for scores and highlights from all over the area. Be sure to follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps to get the latest scores and updates from the area's IHSA teams.

GIRLS: New Trier at Evanston, 6:00 p.m. -- A huge rivalry takes center stage on the girls side on Friday night. Evanston is one of the area's best teams as senior Jayla Turchin is player to watch. New Trier is led by Ava Zaslavsky as they won by a point when these two played for High School Lites cameras last season. The Trevians held off Maine South for a conference win to start the week.

New Trier at No. 8 Evanston 7:30 p.m. -- One of the classic area rivalries also gets played on the boys side on Friday night. New Trier (4-3, 0-1) knocked off Maine East earlier this week after falling to Lane in the Chicago Elite Classic. The Trevians own some close losses to ranked teams like Loyola and Glenbrook South as they are a dangerous team. Evanston (6-0, 1-0) earned an impressive win over Notre Dame in the Chicago Elite Classic as the junior class is full of standouts. Blake Peters and Jaylin Gibson are a strong offensive duo. Isaiah Holden is a defensive presence on the perimeter as well.

Rich Central at No. 14 Thornton, 6:00 p.m. -- Can Thornton continue its monster week following the win over No. 1 Bloom earlier in the week? The Wildcats (6-0, 3-0) have been a major story to start the season as they've gone from unranked to likely top ten in a matter of weeks. Rich Central (0-5, 0-1) will try to shake things up in the Southland by picking up its first win of the season.

No. 4 Whitney Young at No. 11 Lincoln Park, 6:30 p.m. -- Two Public League powers battle in the Red North/West here. The Dolphins (3-2, 3-0) have established a strong start in conference play as seniors D.J. Steward (Duke) and Tyler Beard are a strong backcourt. Lincoln Park (7-1, 3-0) counter with the junior perimeter of Julio Montes and Ismail Habib as they played well as sophomores. Big man Romelle Howard is a factor to watch inside for the Lions and how Whitney Young defends him.

Niles West at No. 19 Glenbrook South, 7:00 p.m. -- We catch a glimpse of unbeaten Glenbrook South (6-0, 1-0) and Player of the Year sleeper Dom Martinelli. Niles West (3-5, 1-0) lost to St. Viator earlier this week as they've lost a few close games to strong competition. The Titans will be challenged as it all begins with Martinelli. One of the area's most potent scorers will look to establish the Glenbrook South offense early as he's had more help in recent weeks.

No. 13 Notre Dame at No. 10 Loyola, 7:00 p.m. -- A huge clash of top-15 teams in non-conference play. Notre Dame (7-1, 1-0) won a huge game against Marian Catholic in ESCC play this week as Troy D'Amico and Louis Lesmond are two of the best juniors in the state. Loyola (7-0, 3-0) is off to an unbeaten start. Bennett and Jordan Kwiecinski are a pair of Division I signees at forward for the Ramblers as they should have a great matchup with Lesmond and D'Amico here.

Lincoln-Way Central at No. 16 Homewood-Flossmoor, 7:00 p.m. -- A SouthWest Suburban crossover between two teams off to solid starts. Lincoln-Way Central (5-1) lost its opener to Joliet West before running off five straight wins. The Vikings (5-1) have played a difficult schedule so far with a loss to Marian Catholic and a win over Hillcrest. Senior R.J. Ogom (College of Charleston) is one of the area's most productive forwards.

Latin vs. Parker, 7:30 p.m. at DePaul -- The Independent School League has a big rivalry matchup in Lincoln Park. Latin (3-1, 1-1) lost to Northridge in conference play earlier this week. Parker (4-4, 1-1) has two double-digit wins on the week as they try to keep the momentum rolling.

Viewers’ Choice Game of the Week

Mather at Foreman, 5 p.m. -- Our Viewers' Choice Game of the Week takes us to the North side for a Public League White-North matchup. Mather (4-5, 2-1) earned a conference win over Taft and fell to Lane in the Red division earlier this week in non-conference play. Foreman (2-3, 0-3) is trying to earn its first conference win after losing a close one to Northside earlier this week.

Breaking: NIU adds it's first 2021 commitment

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

Breaking: NIU adds it's first 2021 commitment

Northern Illinois head coach Thomas Hammock was able to get an early start on the Huskies Class of 2021 as Solorio junior S/WR Brian Whitsey (6-foot-2, 195 pounds) was extended a scholarship offer today at the Huskies Junior Day recruiting event and later gave the Huskies his verbal commitment. 

"I visited NIU today for the Junior Day and NIU has been recruiting me since my sophomore year," Whitsey said. "After being at NIU and getting to know everyone better, I just feel like NIU is where I belong so I committed."

Whitsey, who was also drawing early recruiting attention from the likes of Western Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Toledo, Eastern Illinois, Illinois and SIU discusses what stands out to him about NIU after his Junior Day visit.

"NIU has a great coaching staff. I also like the direction of the program and they have been a winning program for the most part over the last several years. I just feel that NIU has a lot to offer and that it's the best fit and the best place for me. That's why I decided to commit early."

Whitsey is the first known verbal commitment for NIU in the Class of 202.

High School Lites basketbal roundup: Week 7

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

High School Lites basketbal roundup: Week 7

Check out our high school hoops highlights from some of the best games around the state, and be sure to follow @NBCSPREPS for all of the latest scores, highlights, and analysis

Windy City Legends: Candace Parker

Athlete of the Week: Lake Park West's Darrione Rodgers

Team of the Week: Saint Viator hockey

Highlights: Sandburg 63, Stagg 56

Highlights: Marist 57, St. Rita 46

Highlights: Benet 55, St. Charles East 44

Highlights: Morton 67, Leyden 55

Highlights: Sycamore 53, Kaneland 47

Mid-week Mixtape:  Thornton 55, Homewood-Flossmoor 43

Highlights: Buffalo Grove 80, Rolling Meadows 70

Highlights: Senn 73, Amundsen 67

Highlights: Clark 74, Crane 57

Highlights: Whitney Young 80, North Lawndale 41

Highlights Bolingbrook 79, Lincoln-Way East 66