Boys Basketball: Simeon steamrolls Mount Carmel
By Bill Harrison For Sun-Times Media February 26, 2013 8:02PM
Updated: February 26, 2013 10:06PM
During the opening minute of the second quarter of Tuesday’s Mount Carmel-Simeon Class 4A Mount Carmel Regional game, Duke recruit Jabari Parker went to the line to complete a three-point play. The Wolverines were up 14-8 at the time and Parker had 12 of those points.
A Caravan fan in the student cheering section with a cheerleader-size megaphone yelled out, “Overrated” into the dead silence as Parker started his free throw. Parker made the shot and acknowledged the chanter as he backpedaled to play defense.
On this night, Parker confirmed that he’s anything but overrated. He finished with a game-high 24 points and nine rebounds in leading his team to a 70-34 win.
“That’s all right,” said Parker, who had autograph-seekers waiting after the game. “I’m glad I’m in the position I’m in. I’m blessed. This comes with the territory. If you are getting criticism and people are belittling you, that just means you’ve made it. That’s just saying I’m almost there.”
The Wolverines (24-3) will continue their pursuit for a fourth consecutive state title when they meet Marist on Friday night for the regional title.
The Caravan finish 10-17.
Illinois recruit Kendrick Nunn had 17 points and eight rebounds for the Wolverines while Donte Ingram had eight off the bench.
The Wolverines led 12-8 after a quarter and started the second with an 11-2 run. Parker had five during the surge, including that three-point play, while Nunn also had four. The Wolverines led 28-17 at halftime.
“We looked terrible,” said Simeon coach Robert Smith, whose team took over with a 13-0 run to start the third to lead 41-17. “I didn’t like our intensity. I didn’t like how we came out on the court like we were just going to win. They are going to lose if they don’t get it corrected. I’ve been here too many times and I understand what’s going on, and they don’t.”
The Caravan was 5-of-38 from three-point range. Mike Garrett led the Caravan with eight points.
“We had to make shots and we didn’t,” Mount Carmel coach Mike Flaherty. “We’re not going to beat anybody, let alone Simeon, if we can’t shoot a better percentage than that.”