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Boys Basketball: Homewood-Flossmoor storms past Thornwood 78-63

Homewood-Flossmoor's DavSmith is fouled by Thornwood's Kaliph Fagan Marian High School November 25 2013. | Jim Karczewski~ For Sun-Times Media

Homewood-Flossmoor's Davon Smith is fouled by Thornwood's Kaliph Fagan at Marian High School on November 25, 2013. | Jim Karczewski~ For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: December 27, 2013 6:35AM



Monday’s Chicago Heights Classic opener was shaping up to be a classic battle between inside and outside.

Thornwood, with Bradley recruit Donte Thomas leading the way, was on fire from beyond the arc. Homewood-Flossmoor, and especially UIC-bound Tai Odiase, was dominating the paint in an effort to keep up.

But when Thomas became riddled with foul trouble in the second half, Odiase and his teammates saw their chance to take total control.

“They feed off him,” Odiase said. “Getting him out of the game was huge for us. The game definitely changed.”

Thornwood led 46-41 when Thomas picked up his fourth foul and headed to the bench with 6:20 left in the third quarter. The Vikings took over from there as Odiase finished with 23 points and 11 rebounds and H-F pulled away late for a 78-63 win at Marian Catholic.

Davon Smith and Dorian McCraney were huge in the second half for the Vikings (1-0). Smith (5 rebounds) scored 14 of his 16 points after the break and McCraney scored 12 of his 15.

Smith converted a pair of three-point plays in the third quarter, the latter giving the Vikings a 51-48 lead. They held a 55-51 edge after three periods.

H-F went 11-of-15 from the free-throw line in the final quarter to seal the win.

“We spent 22 minutes straight shooting free throws before we came to Marian,” Smith said. “We know with the new hand-check rules there are going to be a lot more fouls. We were ready to shoot them.”

Thomas, who fouled out with 3:36 left in the game, finished with 20 points. Brian Thomas (13 points, 7 rebounds) and Kaliph Fagan (12 points, 6 rebounds) also contributed for Thornwood (0-1).

The Thunderbirds hit 10-of-18 three-point attempts in the first half to take a 41-36 halftime lead but went just 2-of-16 from beyond the arc after the break.

Marian Catholic 75, T.F. South 62: Tyler Ulis scored 20 of his 24 points in the first half as Marian Catholic (1-0) jumped to a 46-25 halftime lead and cruised. Ulis also had six steals.

The Spartans forced 15 first-half turnovers.

“I’m really happy with how we started,” Ulis said. “Defensively, we got it going early. We want to play faster this year and force turnovers.”

T.J. Parham had 11 points and five rebounds and Josh Cohn nine points for Marian.

Ka-Ton Mays (18 points) and Jamahre Baker (17 points) paced T.F. South (0-1).



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