Niles area basketball roundup: Loss puts Maine South boys’ CSL South title hopes in jeopardy

A victory at Evanston last Thursday would have almost certainly sewn up a third straight CSL South championship for Maine South’s boys basketball team.

Instead, the Wildkits put themselves in the driver’s seat, handing the Hawks their first loss of the new year, 58-51, and ending Maine South’s 12-game winning streak which started with its final game at the Proviso West Holiday Tournament.

The Hawks (6-2) and Wildkits (7-1) both have two games remaining on the conference schedule. Maine South undoubtedly needs to take care of business at Niles West Friday night and at Glenbrook South Feb. 20. Both of the Hawks’ CSL South foes have under-.500 records, but so, too, do the Wildkits’ final two league opponents. Evanston hosts Waukegan (winless in the conference) Friday night and wrap up CSL South play at Niles West on Feb. 20.

Caleb deMarigny sank a three from the top of the key to tie the game at 30 in the third quarter, but the Hawks fell behind 46-35 at the end of the quarter. Maine South climbed back into the contest and was within three at 51-48 with just over two minute left. However, that would be the closest Maine South would get the rest of the contest.

Jon Arenas tied Evanston’s Nojel Eastern as the game’s high scorer with 17 points and George Sargeant had 10. Nick Ruben contributed nine.

Maine South got back on the winning track after stopping Palatine, 60-54, at the Milwaukee Bucks Prep Series last Saturday in Milwaukee. Sargeant’s double-double of 23 points and 10 rebounds led the way. Davis Neilands contributed 10 points, Arenas had eight points and four steals, and deMarigny dished out nine assists and had seven points.

Maine South’s 66-59 victory at Hersey on Feb. 3 put its win streak at 12 straight. The Hawks were led by Arenas’ 17 points and five assists. Neilands chipped in with 14 points and seven rebounds, Sargeant added 14 points and five boards, deMarigny notched a double-double with 11 points and 13 assists, and Ruben pulled down eight rebounds. The Hawks were nearly perfect from the free throw line, nailing 16 of 17 attempts; they were 10-for-10 from the stripe in the final quarter.

Notre Dame remained in first place and undefeated in the ESCC following last Friday’s 52-42 triumph over Marian Catholic. Ammar Becar led the Dons (20-4, 6-0) with 17 points, and Anthony D’Avanzo tallied 10 points and nine rebounds. Sophomore Matt Stritzel added nine points.

Senior Joe Mooney was limited to eight points, but coach Tom Les said that was due mainly to Marian playing a box-and-one defense on Mooney.

“The league does a very good job of coaching and scouting,” Les said. “It’s not unusual for them to take away what the competition is good at, so we have to be versatile.”

The Dons have three conference games left, starting at rugged St. Viator Friday night.

“We control our own destiny,” Les said. “St. Viator is a tough place to play. It’ll be a good game.”


Niles West is getting healthy as Nicole Lopatin and Julia Easter returned to the lineup from injuries for the Wolves CSL South game versus New Trier last Friday. But the Wolves were no match for the high-flying Trevians, who cruised to a 61-35 victory and clinched a share of the league championship. New Trier is 24-1 overall and 9-0 in the CSL South.

Jaylnn Estrada scored 16 points to lead the Wolves (13-13, 2-7). Hilma Mededovic added 10 and Katherine DeLara eight.

Resurrection took care of Regina Dominican, 46-32, in the GCAC tourney on Feb. 4 for its 19th win of the season. Jessica Pawula was the Bandits’ top scorer with 16 points, while Maddie Larsen finished with a double-double (10 points, 10 rebounds). Gabriella Galassini of Niles had five steals.

Trinity (21-3) drilled the Bandits, 75-28, in a GCAC semifinal game last Thursday. However, the Bandits notched win No. 20, 45-42, over Mother McAuley for third place last Saturday. Pawula again scored 16 points; Larsen and Taylor Farrell had eight apiece.

Maine South (14-14) found itself in a 20-5 hole to start its CSL South game against Evanston last Friday, but the Hawks roared back to post a 52-48 win—their fifth in the last six contests.

Riley Eckert and Elizabeth Skoronski (five rebounds) shared scoring honors for Maine South with 13 points each. Nina Anderson totaled 11 points, eight rebounds and four steals.

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