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Boys Basketball: Marian Catholic steps past St. Viator

Marian Catholic's Terrone Parham (24) floats toward basket as Spartans play St. Viator. | Allen Cunningham/For Sun-Times Media

Marian Catholic's Terrone Parham (24) floats toward the basket as the Spartans play St. Viator. | Allen Cunningham/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: February 13, 2014 6:45AM



Host Marian Catholic finally was able to shake St. Viator in Friday night’s East Suburban Catholic Conference showdown because of an incredible fourth quarter by Tyler Ulis.

But Ulis, who sat most of the second quarter with two fouls, was the first to say teammate T.J. Parham was the one who put the Spartans in position to claim the 72-56 victory.

“T.J. stepped up big,” Ulis said. “They had no reason to put me back in early in the game. I wasn’t frustrated because (Parham) stepped up so big. We were still in the game, going into the second half.”

Parham, who had 16 first-half points, finished with 22. Ulis had 16 points, 11 assists and five steals while John Oliver had 10 points for Marian (12-1, 2-0).

Drake-bound Ore Arogundade led St. Viator (11-3, 2-1) with 24 points and 10 rebounds, while Roosevelt Smart scored 11 points.

Ulis went to the bench with 7:02 left in the second period. He not only was in foul trouble, but seemed to be favoring his right wrist, which was sprained Jan. 4 in a game at the Muskegon (Mich.) Shootout.

He returned for the final minute of the second period, which saw the Spartans go on a flurry that ended with a steal and runaway slam dunk by Parham to make it 31-29 at halftime.

Parham contributed more later on, but the slam was an exclamation point of sorts for a clutch first-half performance.

“When Tyler gets in foul trouble, coach (Mike Taylor) always emphasizes that somebody else needs to step up,” Parham said. “He always puts pressure on me to step up and play my game the best I can. I just stepped up and tried to score as many points as I could.

“We’re both D-I players (Ulis to Kentucky, Parham to West Point) and we both play with confidence like a duo and feed off of each other.”

Ulis, flexing his right wrist at the start of the third period, spent a lot of time in assist mode, driving and then dishing to Parham and Oliver for baskets.

“I was just trying to get the ball to my teammates,” Ulis said. “My shots weren’t falling. I couldn’t make the usual shots that I make. But I tried to stay aggressive and just dump the ball to my teammates.”

The 6-foot-4 Arogundade was steady for the Lions all evening, scoring six points in each period. His six in the third, plus seven by Smart, got St. Viator its biggest lead at 45-42. Ulis, however, had two steals, hit a free throw, fed Christopher Austin for a three and Ezra Pointer-Jones for a layup over the final minute to put Marian back in front.

Ulis then took over in the fourth quarter, first dishing to Oliver for back-to-back baskets, then driving himself for a layup. He was responsible for 18 of Marian’s 24 points in the fourth period, either by scoring or getting an assist.



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