Oak Lawn has been a much-improved team since January.
Look no further for proof than the Spartans’ 6-3 record since falling Jan. 10 to Hillcrest.
“We’ve been playing better lately,” Oak Lawn coach Jason Rhodes said. “We made a change in the lineup that has really helped us.”
That change was moving David Stacy to point guard. At 6-3, Stacy provides a difficult match-up for most opponents.
“He can present some mismatches,” Rhodes said. “He has taken us to a new level. He’s done a beautiful job at point guard.”
The highlight of the season came Friday, when the Spartans claimed neighborhood bragging rights over Richards, registering a 67-63 victory. Josh Prince, a junior, had a big night, scoring 26 points and pulling down 12 rebounds. Stacy contributed 15 points and five assists, and senior Ibrahim Samra buried three three-pointers, helping the Spartans overcome an 18-point second-quarter deficit.
“Josh has been playing like a man,” Rhodes said. “It was quite a game.”
That included the Spartans’ student section storming the court.
“We started a fan section and they’ve been tremendous,” Rhodes said. “Our kids have fed off everything they provide.”
That’s obvious, considering four of the five Spartans wins since Jan. 10 have come at home.
When the inaugural Catholic League Tournament began 12 days ago, few predicted De La Salle would win the championship.
The Meteors had been inconsistent much of the season. However, the tournament brought out the best in De La Salle, which took down Loyola, Fenwick and Mount Carmel to claim the championship.
“It was very cool,” De La Salle coach Tom White said. “This team will sit in the gym the rest of their lives; their names are on that Catholic League plaque forever.”
Saturday, the Meteors rallied from a nine-point fourth-quarter deficit to stun Mount Carmel 67-62 in the title game.
White is hoping his team has a strong finish to the regular season strong and carries the momentum into the postseason. If that’s to occur, the Meteors will need Martez Cameron, Karl Harris and Brandon Hutton to continue their strong play.
Player of the Week
Karl Harris, of De La Salle, is the SouthtownStar Boys Basketball Player of the Week.
Harris, a 6-foot-4 junior from Hazel Crest, scored 17 points, including 10 in overtime, to lead the Meteors to a 67-62 overtime win over Mount Carmel, and scored 13 points during a 51-47 victory over Fenwick.