Michael O’Brien’s notebook: Dec. 1, 2018

Uplift's Markese Jacobs (0) runs toward the basket. Worsom Robinson/For the Sun-Times.
Uplift's Markese Jacobs (0) runs toward the basket. Worsom Robinson/For the Sun-Times.

DJ Steward was up to the task. The new Public League star drained three consecutive three-pointers to open Young’s 67-61 win against Mater Dei (CA) in the Chicago Elite Classic on Saturday at Wintrust Arena.

The Fenwick transfer finished with 25 points, eight rebounds and three assists. It was probably the best overall game by any local player on Saturday.

“It felt great,” Steward said. “My teammates got me going early by getting me the ball. I knocked down some open shots and that got my momentum going.”

Myles Baker had 18 points and four rebounds and Tyler Beard and Justin Warren each scored eight for the Dolphins (2-0). Warren, a 6-0 guard, also had eight rebounds.

Mater Dei (3-1) started two talented 6-9 sophomores, Wilhelm Breidenbach and Harrison Hornery. But the Monarchs relied on three-pointers for almost all of their offense. They were 7-for-34 from three-point range.

“We knew that was coming and worked on it a lot in practice,” Steward said.

Ryan Evans led Mater Dei with 22 points. Hornery had 14 points and 11 rebounds and Breidenbach added 10 points and 16 rebounds. The Dolphins were out-rebounded 41-29.

CHICAGO ELITE CLASSIC

Bloomington 91, St. Louis Chaminade 87: Quality win for the Purple Raiders. I only caught the second half of this one. SIU recruit Chris Payton had 31 points and 10 boards.

No. 5 Bloom 64, West Aurora 46: The first real major showcase event for the highly-regarded Blazing Trojans. They started pretty flat but dominated the second half on the boards and held Blackhawks star Marquise Walker to an 0 for 11 shooting game.

“That’s my guy, I know how he plays,” Bloom junior Donovan Newby said. “I think our guards played with pride on defense. If we do that it will be hard for any scorer to beat us.”

Dante Maddox Jr. had 15 points, Keshawn Williams added 10. Newby had nine points and 10 rebounds and big man Martice Mitchell added nine points, seven rebounds and five blocks.

Hezekiah Salter, an 6-2 senior big man, was effective in the post for West Aurora with 14 points and eight rebounds. Senior guard Traevon Brown had 14 points and six boards. Walker scored one point.

READ THE FULL STORY: No. 2 Evanston 80, No. 11 Uplift 64

Sunrise Christian, Kan. 71, Orr 46: The Spartans lose to a national prep school. Not much shame in that. I was writing the Evanston story for the paper so didn’t watch this one, but Tujautae Williams threw down a massive dunk about five feet in front of me. He had 12 points and nine rebounds and likely opened the eyes of some of the college coaches here. Terry Williams added 11. Orr was a late addition to the event, they didn’t even know they were playing until a few days ago.

Bogan 72, Dominican (WI) 47: Very impressive performance from the Bengals. They are long and athletic and deep and play with the same fire that all of Arthur Goodwin’s teams have. Twelve players scored. Senior guards Jordan Booker (nine points, six assists, zero turnovers) and Jeremiah Washington (nine points, four assists) are stronger and even more assured than they were last season.  Kennedy Brown, a 6-9 junior I have never heard of before today, had seven points and nine rebounds and started the game. Bigs Rashaun Agee and Tremeary Fraley also played well.

Bogan coach Arthur Goodwin said Antione Bloxton is on the team, he just isn’t eligible yet. The Julian transfer is expected to be one of the Bengals’ top players and he wasn’t on the roster.

St. Louis Vashon 75, Morgan Park 62: The score was close for most of the game, despite how incredible Vashon was for stretches. Things kind of fizzled out in the last four minutes, both teams were exhausted. Cam’Ron Fletcher had 26, 13 rebounds and three dunks that have been seared into the long-term memory of everyone in attendance. Player of the day so far. Mario McKinney scored 18. Marcus Watson led the Mustangs with 14.

Adam Miller scored 14, was 6-for-17 from the field. I still don’t remember Deshawndre Washington from last season, but I know who he is now. He had 14 points and nine boards and other that Watson he was Morgan Park’s best player.

St. Vincent-St. Mary (OH) 61, Simeon 58: Kejuan Clements had a chance to tie it at the end but couldn’t get the three-pointer to fall. It was a debut for the new-look Wolverines, who had four new starters. Sophomore Ahamad Bynum had 18 points, Antonio Reeves scored 15 and grabbed 10 rebounds. Clements added 13.

Simeon (0-1) was 26-for-45 from the free-throw line.

“It wasn’t a bad debut,” Simeon coach Robert Smith said. “But we couldn’t beat an elementary school turning the ball over 21 times and missing 19 free throws.”

Highly-regarded freshmen AJ Casey (three points, four rebounds) and Jaylen Drane (two points) each made their debuts.

“To come into Chicago and win is big,” St. Vincent-St. Mary coach Dru Joyce said. “This is nothing we are taking lightly.”

Lunden McDay led St. Vincent-St. Mary (1-0) with 21 points.

Saturday’s other top games 

Curie 72, Memphis Raleigh Egypt 69: Nice win at the prestigious Marshall County Hoopfest. DaJuan Gordon led the way with 17 points and eight rebounds. Ramean Hinton and Justin Harmon each scored 16.

Fenwick 56, Providence 38: The Friars follow up the big Oak Park win nicely. Solomon Oraegbu had 17 point and Bryce Hopkins had 13.

St. Laurence 78, Glenbard West 64: Two intriguing teams. Trey Davis scored 19 and Jeremiah Williams had 18 for St. Laurence. SIU recruit Evan Taylor scored 21 for the Hilltoppers.

Glenbrook South 65, Conant 40: The Titans are red hot. Dom Martinelli and Jimmy McMahon each scored 15.

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