Boys Basketball: Hillcrest fends off T.F. South
By Tony Baranek email@example.com February 28, 2014 9:14PM
TF South's Jamahre Baker (22) drives toward the basket as Hillcrest's George McDaniel (11) and Taylor Adway (2) defend. | Allen Cunningham/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 3, 2014 6:41AM
With Hillcrest’s 26th consecutive conference title locked up, Hawks coach Don Houston did some lineup tweaking for Friday’s Senior Night finale against visiting T.F. South.
T.F. South took advantage and made things more than interesting for two quarters before the Hawks regulars kicked into gear in the second half of what turned out a 66-54 South Suburban Blue victory.
Allen Jones scored 17 points, while Taylor Adway added 14 points and seven rebounds, George McDaniel 10 points and five rebounds and DeAngelo Isby seven points for Hillcrest (19-6, 12-1).
K-Ton Mays had nine points, while Ronald Ryan, Samuel Ogunbode and Lawrence Lemon all had eight for T.F. South (12-14, 9-4).
“It’s a great feeling just to be a part of it,” Jones said of the conference winning streak. “I’m really speechless right now.”
It was Houston’s seventh straight title as coach. Tom Cappel won the previous 19.
“It’s hard to imagine,” Houston said. “The last time we weren’t conference champs, I was actually in high school.
“Coach Cappel did a great job of winning the first 19, and I was able to come in and continue it. It’s tough because you have people coming at you all the time. To keep a streak going along like this, it’s basically the kids having pride in the program.”
The Hawks were sloppy in the first half, committing 11 turnovers. Ryan, meanwhile, hit two threes and Stone worked inside for three buckets for the Rebels. It was 17-14 South after one period, 29-26 at halftime.
Isby and McDaniel, both juniors, went out with the rest of the regulars to start the second half for Hillcrest, and Isby immediately popped a three to tie it up. McDaniel added back-to-back layups during a 12-2 outburst
“I knew for the seniors it was their time (in the first half),” McDaniel said, smiling. “It was fun watching the seniors play. We just had to come off the bench and play hard.”
T.F. South, trailing 46-36 in the waning seconds of the third quarter, didn’t quit. Brandon Murdock closed the period with a three, and after two free throws and a layup by DeAson Taylor and another freebie by Murdock, the Rebels were within 50-44.
Isby broke the Rebels’ momentum with a fadeaway jumper, and with 4:03 left he drew a fifth foul by Mays. Isby hit both free throws, and Hillcrest was in the clear.