Class 4A Oak Lawn Regional

  • Written by Ken Karson

No more Spartan(s) existence

Rhodes’ former team ousts current one from playoffs

Something old met something new last Monday, and Jason Rhodes and his Oak Lawn players wound up feeling blue because of it.
Rhodes’ former program, Kenwood Academy, was the Spartans’ initial foe in their own Class 4A regional and he admitted the experience was “a little strange,” even though things have changed since Rhodes departed the Chicago school.
“I’m two coaches removed from the guy who’s there now,” he said. “The last group of kids I knew real well graduated last year. The one thing they’re doing is they’ve gone to more of a read-and-react offense, which is kind of similar stylistically to ours.”
Similarities were evident on the scoreboard, too, as the Broncos and Oak Lawn needed an overtime period to decide a winner. But after Josh Prince’s free throw pulled the Spartans even at the end of regulation, they could not score anymore.

Moraine athletics wrap

  • Written by Maura Vizza

Cyclones denied spot on national stage

Sweet redemption — that’s what Moraine Valley College’s women enjoyed on March 2.
That day, the Cyclones turned the tables on rival South Suburban College, which had administered a one-point setback to Moraine earlier this season. What made the Cyclones’ payback special is that this win brought SSC’s 2013-14 basketball campaign screeching to a halt while extending their own.
By virtue of its 71-70 overtime victory, Moraine advanced to the Region IV championship contest opposite No. 1-ranked Kankakee Community College. However, that’s where the fun ended.
Plagued by a bout of cold shooting, as well as the numerous trips to the free-throw line granted the Cavaliers, the Cyclones fell short of their quest to reach the National Junior College Athletic Association Division II national tournament. Instead, Moraine brought the curtain down on a fine 22-11 season by absorbing a 79-56 defeat on Saturday in Elgin.
The Cyclones, who lost for only the second time in their last 12 contests, were rarely in the hunt. They trailed by only six at 24-18 in the first half, but then got buried beneath a 23-6 blitz that put the No. 10-ranked Cavaliers firmly in control.

Class 4A Whitney Young Regional

  • Written by Ken Karson

Cut by close shave

Rice narrowly misses out on beating Meteors

The champs nearly became chumps.
After winning the inaugural Chicago Catholic League Tournament by scoring wins over such heavy hitters as Mt. Carmel and Loyola Academy, De La Salle understandably housed big aspirations heading into last week’s Class 4A Whitney Young Regional. But the path to Friday’s title contest proved treacherous.
That probably should have been expected, seeing as how the Meteors’ semifinal foe, Brother Rice, had already given them a battle during the regular season. De La Salle prevailed then by just three points, and last Tuesday’s rematch was every bit as competitive.

Trinity sports report

  • Written by Tim Cronin

Reidsma, Bos score top-eight finishes at NAIA meet

Put Anna Bos and Andy Reidsma on a track, and they deliver for Trinity Christian College.
That was the case again at last weekend’s NAIA Indoor Championship in Geneva, Ohio. Bos placed eighth in Saturday’s 5,000-meter final by completing the race in 17 minutes, 36.70 seconds and collecting NAIA All-America honors in the process. She had run a school- and personal-record 17:28 in Thursday’s qualifying round and was seeded third entering the final.
Reidsma twice set school and personal records in his 5,000-run, first with a 14:53.23 clocking in the qualifying race and then by covering the distance in 14:43.35 in Saturday’s final. That brought him a seventh-place finish and All-America recognition.

Community sports news

Marist volleyball coach receives honor

Marist volleyball coach Julie Popp Hopkins was recently named as a recipient of the Thirty Under 30 award given by the American Volleyball Coaches Association.
This award was created to honor 30 of the up-and-coming volleyball coaches under 30 years of age at all levels of the sport. Popp Hopkins was one of only two high school coaches to receive the distinction; the rest were college-level coaches.