Boys Basketball: Oak Forest turns aside Morris
By Michael O’Brien email@example.com February 10, 2014 9:02PM
Jason Roland of Oak Forest rushes down court past Morris' Sam Allen. | Patrick Gleason/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 11, 2014 2:14AM
Oak Forest’s Kyle Flanagan said one college coach told him he should mold his game after NBA star Kevin Love.
Flanagan isn’t quite there yet, but the 6-foot-9 junior shows enough promise that several colleges are keeping tabs on him. Northern Illinois, UIC, Western Illinois and Denver have shown interest.
That’s what happens when you help lead your rather unknown high school program to an 18-3 record.
“It’s been a pretty fun season,” Flanagan said. “(Coach Matt Manzke) said it was our first 18-win season since 1987.”
The 18th win almost didn’t come Monday night. It’s possible the Bengals were looking ahead to Friday’s huge South Suburban Blue game against Hillcrest, but they didn’t play a very good first half and trailed visiting Morris by a point at the break.
A different Oak Forest team arrived in the third quarter, attacking the basket with regularity and wearing down the Redskins for a 67-49 victory.
“Coach just came in and fired us up at halftime,” Flanagan said. “This was our first Monday game of the season, and sometimes those can be a little difficult.”
Flanagan (18 points, 10 rebounds) was 6-of-10 from the field.
“Kyle has the ability to come out to the 15-foot range and hit that shot or pass the ball,” Manzke said. “He’s pretty versatile. If he keeps improving he has a chance to be a very good player.”
Jason Roland scored 11 and had five rebounds while Tom Shute added nine points, all in the second half.
“We knew Morris did a great job running their motion offense and in the first half we just didn’t do a great job helping,” Manzke said. “I think our athleticism wore them down a little bit.”
Austin Patterson led Morris (14-5) with 19 points and eight rebounds. Jake Walker added 16 points.
Hillcrest coach Don Houston was at the game scouting the Bengals.
“That’s a huge game for us Friday,” Manzke said. “We have an opportunity to win the conference, but it won’t be easy. Hillcrest is the king, and (Houston) is probably the best coach in the conference.”