Michael O’Brien’s notebook: Nov. 19, 2018

Kenwood's Seryee Lewis (0) tries to block a shot. Worsom Robinson/For the Sun-Times.
Kenwood's Seryee Lewis (0) tries to block a shot. Worsom Robinson/For the Sun-Times.

A new episode of No Shot Clock will be out tomorrow morning. We recorded on Sunday.

Joe Henricksen gave his usual warning about not getting too excited or disappointed with how teams perform this week: “It is just Thanksgiving, they have only had two weeks to practice, blah blah blah.”

Joe is totally right of course, but I have a hard time with it. Tonight however, I am going to do my best to tone down the hype. Boy did Seyree Lewis play well though.

The Kenwood junior lived up to everything I’ve been hearing about him. I will stop now. But I’m looking forward to seeing what the next two seasons hold for Lewis.

The Broncos played a very solid game and beat St. Rita. Lamond Johnson is going to really help their poise and mentality this season. Read all about it here.

A student from the University of Illinois was shadowing me tonight for his sportswriting class. I was in a pretty ripe mood, it was a long day dealing with the Simeon-Nazareth drama. I hope I didn’t scare him off. But get this, Ayo Dosunmu is in his class. That’s pretty cool. I’m sure Ayo will make an excellent journalist if that basketball player thing doesn’t pan out.

Happy start of the season everyone and thanks for reading. It is so great to have basketball back.

Monday’s top games

No. 25 Notre Dame 47, Lake View 35: This one was very close at the half. Signs of life at Lake View. Also a reminder that the Dons are very young. Troy D’Amico scored 17 and Anthony Styles added 1o.

Hales 45, Baker 40: The Spartans are back playing basketball again. Malik Johnson had 15 points and 14 rebounds.

Glenbrook South 66, Naperville Central 51: Phil Ralston made an instant impact in Glenview last season, despite what the won/loss record was. I fully expect the Titans to enter the Super 25 at some point this season. When I saw them in March they were a feisty, smart bunch. Dom Martinelli had 22 points and Will King added 19. Redhawks’ big man Chris Conway scored 11. Football stars Peyton Thorne and Samuel Jackson are both playing basketball this season. Jackson scored 14 and Thorne had nine.

Wauconda 90, Johnsburg 83: So, not much defense in this one. But Zach Toussaint is making an early case to be this season’s WATCH. The senior scored 51 points in the loss.

Hersey 64, DuSable 34: New coach Austin Scott gets his first win. Ryan Verhulst scored 17 for the Huskies and Kymeon Mayo led DuSable with 16.

North Lawndale 61, Schurz 58: I’m sure it was an emotional night for the Phoenix. Congrats on getting a season-opening win for Coach Thorpe. Demetrius Douglas scored 24 and Jalen Thorpe and Daquan Tucker each had 10. I’ve been hearing a lot about 6-8 Zion Washington and he delivered with a big double-double tonight, 11 rebounds and 12 blocks.

Naperville North 64, Hinsdale Central 54 2 OT: It was a big opening night for the Loyola recruits. Tom Welch had 35 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks.

No. 24 Brother Rice 77, Plainfield South 65: Marquise Kennedy scored 41, the second highest point total in Joliet West Tournament history. Loyola fans are going to have fun following Welch and Kennedy this season. And if Kennedy keeps scoring like this maybe people will stop ragging on me for ranking the Crusaders.

No. 15 Oswego East 82, Downers Grove South 68: The big numbers just keep piling up. RayJ Dennis scored 31. Kam Battle had 13 and Sam Schultz added 10. Justin Eagins, who narrowly missed the list of the area’s five best shooters, scored 28 for the Mustangs.

Payton 73, De La Salle 67: We might not have talked about Payton enough in the preview stuff. Really solid opening win. Jabari Chiphe scored 24 and Ronan Prugh added 20. Clyde Benton led the Meteors with 29.

No. 5 Bloom 66, Vocational 48: The Blazing Trojans aren’t messing around. This is a quality win right out of the gate. Big man Martice Mitchell scored 18. Keshawn Williams and Dante Maddox Jr. each added 13. Naashar Banks-Carter led the Cavaliers with 17.

No. 23 Hillcrest 65, Thornwood 51: Jeremiah Staten led the Hawks with 20. Big debut for Perspectives transfer Trevon Walker with 15 points.

No. 13 Homewood-Flossmoor 58, T.F. South 54: The Rebels are getting some good preseason buzz. The score shows they may be a real threat this season. Hanging with H-F is a good indicator. RJ Ogom led the Vikings with 17 points. James Drummond had 15 for TF South.

West Aurora 65, Neuqua Valley 56: The Blackhawks are just on the outskirts of the Super 25. The senior backcourt played well tonight. Marquise Walker had 27, Treavon Brown 16.

Joliet West 57, Rich South 45: Jamere Hill scored 18 for the Tigers. I’m very excited about this young group in Joliet and they are going to be in the notebook every night they play. Just deal with it.

Matt Harness is doing write-ups from the St. Viator Joe Majkowski Thanksgiving Classic again this year. Here is his stuff on tonight’s two games:

No. 9 St. Viator 61, Libertyville 53: With the Lions leading by three late in the fourth quarter Monday, senior guard Treyvon Calvin got out on the fastbreak, threw a perfect pass to senior guard Jeremiah Hernandez, who finished the run with a dunk.

When the team needed them the most, Calvin and Hernandez stepped up. The result was a season-opening win at Saint Viator’s Joe Majkowski Thanksgiving Basketball Classic.

“They’ve been through the fire,” Saint Viator head coach Quin Hayes said of the two future Division I players. “They did a heck of a job for us, especially in the second half, by remaining composed. That’s what you expect from your leaders.”

Hernandez, who signed with Kent State on Wednesday, had a game-high 33 points and five rebounds. Meanwhile, the Wright State-bound Calvin added 17 points and nine rebounds. He was 4-for-10 on 3-pointers.

The Lions led 13-9 after the first quarter but went into halftime down 30-25. Paced by Hernandez got within two, 42-40, by the start of the fourth.

Saint Viator took a 52-49 lead on junior forward Owen Hickey’s 3, setting the stage for Calvin and Hernandez to close the deal.

Senior guard Josh Steinhaus scored 16 for the Wildcats. Senior guard Brian Witterdink added 12 points and six rebounds. Junior forward Will Moore had nine points and five rebounds.

“We have a long way to go, but it’s always good to start with a win,” Hayes said.

Conant 44, Prospect 40 OT: Senior forward Raj Mittal had 14 points, four rebounds and three assists as the Cougars outlasted their Mid-Suburban League counterpart the Knights.

Senior guard Anthony Wachal added seven points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals for Conant. Sophomore forward Devon Ellis contributed nine points and three blocks.

Prospect senior guard TJ Johannesen scored a game-best 17 points to go with two steals. Senior guard Sam Murray had nine points, four rebounds, three steals and two assists.

Want to hear all about the Sun-Times’ preseason Super 25 basketball rankings? Michael O’Brien and Joe Henricksen go in-depth on all 25 teams in the latest episode of No Shot Clock, the Chicago high school basketball podcast. LISTEN HERE.

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