Boys Basketball: Richards defeats Marist 59-40 for Tip-off Classic title
By Bill Harrison For Sun-Times Media November 29, 2013 10:46PM
Richards’ Josh Meier is defended by Marist’s Kyle Reynolds during Friday’s game. | Stacia Timonere~For Sun Times Media
Updated: January 2, 2014 6:38AM
With the Richards football team playing in the Class 6A state title game on Saturday, the basketball team was forced to play without two of its projected starters — Dedrick Shannon and Spencer Tears — the entire first week of the season.
That total rose to three when guard Deon Alexander went on a family vacation and had to miss the title game of the District 218 Thanksgiving Tip-off Classic at Eisenhower on Friday afternoon.
It didn’t matter. The Bulldogs still cruised to a 59-40 win over Marist.
“We didn’t use that as an excuse. We just tried to play our best,” Richards center Josh Meier said. “We knew we had a chance to win still. We tried not to talk about it at all. So we just wanted to get over the hump. We put a big emphasis on everybody stepping up.”
The Bulldogs (4-0) stepped it up in the second half, going on a decisive 17-0 run to lead 49-25 early in the fourth quarter after leading just 23-21 at the half. Meier, who was held without a point in the first half, scored nine of his 13 points during the run.
Thaer Othman led the Bulldogs with 19 points, including four three-pointers.
Bradley Hill led the RedHawks (3-1) with 12 points.
“We had two really good weeks of practice,” Richards coach John Chappetto said. “Even in the first couple games you’re never really sure of how good you are. We had a lot of question marks coming into this.”
For the first time this season, the RedHawks, who had 20 turnovers, felt the weight of graduating 10 seniors from last season, including four starters. Marist led 10-6 early in the first quarter, but after a 9-0 run by the Bulldogs, the RedHawks never regained the lead, drawing as close as a 21-21 tie late in the second quarter.
Kevin Lerma, who had 28 points Wednesday, did not play for Marist after arriving late for the pregame walkthrough.
“He’s a great kid, though,” Marist coach Gene Nolan said. “I thought Richards’ defensive pressure really got to our guards. They are well coached, and in the third quarter we weren’t getting high percentage shots and couldn’t stop them defensively.”
Andrew 80, Eisenhower 77: Jarvion Franklin led Andrew (3-1) with 14 points in the third-place game. Gino Karopulos and Ty’Shon Mosley each had 12. For Eisenhower (2-2), Calviontae Washington had 22 poiints and Vinny Curta added 21.
Shepard 74, Southland Prep 41: Jacob Littleton scored a game-high 29 points to power Shepard (1-3) in the seventh-place game. Dajean Kelly led Southland Prep (0-4) with 12 points.