Athlete of the Week Corban Murphy Crysta
Athlete of the Week
Crystal Lake Central, Senior
Murphy was a unanimous selection to the all-tournament team at the Jacobs Holiday Classic, which the Tigers won with a 5-0 record.
The Tigers (12-1) defeated Crystal Lake South, 65-43, in the championship game. Murphy scored eight points in that game, but had big scoring games in the other four contests.
The 6-foot-3 guard-forward scored 23 points in Central’s 63-46 victory against Cary-Grove, had 17 in the Tigers’ 40-39 win against Chicago Tilden and led the Tigers with 21 in their 66-58 semifinal victory over Lakes.
History makers: Johnsburg’s 2003 boys basketball team, the only one in area history to make the IHSA Class AA State Tournament Elite Eight, will be honored Saturday when the Skyhawks host Woodstock at 5 p.m.
Johnsburg coach Mike Toussaint said most of the players from that team will return for the 10-year anniversary celebration. There will be a reception for the team following the game at Raymond’s Bowl and Entertainment Center in Johnsburg.
The Skyhawks were 30-1 that season and won the Rockford Sectional with wins against Prairie Ridge (51-49) and Boylan (60-53). Johnsburg then drilled East Moline, 47-24, in the Moline Supersectional to become the area’s first boys team to make the Class AA Elite Eight.
Glenbrook North, with freshman Jon Scheyer, defeated the Skyhawks, 47-24, in their quarterfinal game in Peoria.
Help for C-G: Cary-Grove coach Ralph Schuetzle looks forward to seeing what his backcourt will look like with junior Tyler Szydlo playing next to sophomore Jason Gregoire and senior Matt Motzel.
Gregoire had a late start after playing for the Class 6A state championship runner-up football team, then Szydlo missed most of three weeks with a concussion. Szydlo played his most minutes since being hurt against Zion-Benton in Saturday’s 57-45 loss at the Jacobs Holiday Classic.
Szydlo showed how he can help with three steals in the fourth quarter as the Trojans came back from a 15-point deficit to cut it to five.
“[Szydlo] is a big reason we can run our [full-court] press so effectively, he has long arms and good feet,” Schuetzle said. “He can take a ton of pressure off Jason handling the ball when he’s in there. They haven’t had a lot of time together.”
Good week: Crystal Lake South was 3-2 and finished as runner-up at the Jacobs Holiday Classic, losing to Crystal Lake Central, 65-43, in the championship. Despite the tough finish, Gators coach Matt LePage was encouraged by what he saw.
“We have to take it for what it’s worth, but we played great basketball to this point,” LePage said. “We have to stay optimistic and positive. I like the fact that they’re [in the locker room] disappointed.”
This Week’s Top Games
Johnsburg vs. Lake Zurich
3:30 p.m. Friday, Bradley Center in Milwaukee
• For the second consecutive year, the Skyhawks meet the Bears in the home arena of the Milwaukee Bucks.
Hampshire vs. Crystal Lake Central
5 p.m. Saturday, at Central Fieldhouse
• So far, these two teams have been the best in the Fox Valley Conference Fox Division. Hampshire (12-2) was third in the DeKalb Chuck Dayton Tournament, and Central (12-1) won the Jacobs Holiday Classic.