Athlete of the Week
Marian Central, so.
The Hurricanes’ 5-foot-10 guard scored 71 points in four games as Marian went 2-2 in the Woodstock Hoops for Healing Tournament. The Hurricanes already have half their win total of last season.
Pischke scored 32 points, with five 3-pointers, in Marian’s 57-55 victory over Cary-Grove on Friday. He came back with 19 points and three 3s Saturday in the Hurricanes’ 72-57 victory over Round Lake.
Early returns: It’s a small sample size, but two teams that got off to solid starts in Crystal Lake Central’s Coaches vs. Cancer Tournament were McHenry and Prairie Ridge.
McHenry, which again has a short lineup and relies on 3-pointers, was 3-1 for the week, with its only loss coming to 4-0 Carmel.
Prairie Ridge has an experienced lineup with decent size and also was 3-1. Its only loss also was against Carmel.
R-B rookies: Richmond-Burton should be a factor in the Big Northern Conference East Division this season with four returning starters and a pair of freshmen playing key roles.
Joey St. Pierre, a 6-8 freshman, is the most noticeable with his size and played well in his first week. But 5-8 point guard Blaine Bayer also gives the Rockets a boost off the bench. R-B coach Brandon Creason says Bayer and senior guard Brian Wells are his quickest players.
“You don’t get a lot of true point guards,” Creason said, “those kids who are absolute point guards. And Blaine has that makeup. He can handle the ball with both hands; it’s a very underrated skill in this day and age. He can go with left and right, changes speeds well. He has adjustments to make sometimes, but we like what he brings.”
Creason said St. Pierre and Bayer both have played so much travel basketball, and against older players, that adjusting to varsity will not be a huge deal.
This week’s top games
Hampshire at Prairie Ridge
7 p.m. Tuesday
The Whip-Purs are led by guard Ryan Cork and finished 2-2 at the Sycamore Thanksgiving Tournament. Prairie Ridge was 3-1 at the Crystal Lake Central Coaches vs. Cancer Tournament.
Crystal Lake Central at Crystal Lake South
5 p.m. Saturday
This is the annual Day of Hoops for the District 155 rivals, where girls and boys games, from freshman through varsity levels, alternate throughout the day. The Gator Link Crew and South cheerleaders will be selling items all day with proceeds benefiting relatives of a Crystal Lake South family whose home in downstate Washington was destroyed by a tornado last month. There also will be donations taken during games for that cause.
– Joe Stevenson