Andrew stays unbeaten with victory over Thornwood

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Andrew stays unbeaten with victory over Thornwood

By Michael O'Brien
YourSeason.com

All of No. 4 Andrew from the coach to the players to the fans in the stands knew that Sundays game at Thornwood was a measuring stick. A win in South Holland would go a long way towards validating the Thunderbolts undefeated record.

It was with that pressure on his shoulders that junior Glorind Lisha stepped to the free-throw line twice in the final eight seconds of the game. He made two of four, just enough to seal a 48-45 win over Thornwood.

It was way too stressful, said Lisha. I came up short on one and off to the right on the other.

Jubril Adekoya had a coast-to-coast rebound and floater with 2:01 to play, and then found his older brother Jawad for a dunk with 1:45 to play, giving Andrew a 44-34 lead.

But Thornwood star Darrell Combs scored seven consecutive points to cut the lead to three. Jubril Adekoya made one of two free throws to increase the lead to five, but Combs was fouled on a drive to the basket on the next possession. He made both free throws to cut the lead to three with 12 seconds to play and set up the pressure situation for Lisha.

He had my heart racing missing those two, Jubril Adekoya said. He usually shoots like 90 percent from the line.

Jawad led Andrew with 15 points and four rebounds. Jubril scored 11 and grabbed six rebounds and Lisha scored 12. Mike Bobek contributed eight for the Thunderbolts (16-0, 7-0 SouthWest Suburban Red).

Combs finished with 17 points for Thornwood (12-6, 6- 1) and Khapri Alston added 12points and 14 rebounds.

Im very impressed with Alston, Andrew coach Tim OHalloran said. Any time he doesnt have the ball in his hands Im happy.

Andrews defensive effort was the key in the second half, especially considering Thornwood dominated the boards, out-rebounding Andrew 35-25.

We keyed on Alston in the second half, Jubril Adekoya said. Hes really strong and can get his post position every time.

[PHOTO] Joe Maddon, Miguel Montero patch things up over a drink

[PHOTO] Joe Maddon, Miguel Montero patch things up over a drink

Despite the Cubs ending their 108-year World Series drought, Miguel Montero made offseason headlines for all the wrong reasons when he complained about his role in the Cubs' 2017 championship campaign.

Montero criticized Maddon's communication skills, catching rotation and bullpen decision-making after the team's Grant Park celebration. Maddon brushed off the criticism, and last week at spring training Montero said he hadn't spoke with the Cubs' skipper.

That tension appears to be all but a thing of the past, as Montero posted this picture of him and his manager sharing a drink together sporting nothing but smiles.

It's safe to say Montero would describe his relationship with Maddon now as: #WeAreGood.

Five Things to Watch: Blackhawks clash with Wild tonight on CSN

Five Things to Watch: Blackhawks clash with Wild tonight on CSN

Watch as the Blackhawks take on the Minnesota Wild tonight on CSN and streaming live on CSNChicago.com. Coverage begins at 6:30 p.m. with Blackhawks Pregame Live. Then stick around after the final buzzer to watch Blackhawks Postgame Live for highlights and analysis.

Click here to watch the game or download the NBC Sports App, your home for live streaming coverage of the Blackhawks.

Five Things to Watch:

1. Road warriors.

The Blackhawks have won six straight games away from the United Center, and are looking to make it a seventh in Minnesota tonight. They've scored the game's first goal in four of those wins, and in the other two, overcame 1-0 deficits to beat Dallas 5-3 and Edmonton 5-1, the latter of which they scored five unanswered goals.

2. Corey Crawford vs. Devan Dubnyk.

Crawford hasn't quite been the same since undergoing an emergency appendectomy on Dec. 3, but he turned in probably his best outing since then in the Blackhawks' last meeting against Minnesota on Feb. 8 when he stopped 35 of 38 shots in a 4-3 overtime win. He essentially stole two points, and prevented the Wild from picking up the extra one. Across from him tonight will be Dubnyk, who leads the league in wins (32), goals against average (1.97) and save percentage (.934).

3. Jonathan Toews on fire.

After a tough offensive drought earlier in the season that lasted longer than expected, the Blackhawks captain has six goals and 10 assists in his last 12 games, and upped his point total to 37, which now ranks fifth on the team. In the last meeting against Minnesota two weeks ago, Toews had a three-point night and scored the game winner in overtime. 

4. Mikael Granlund among league's most underrated players.

File Granlund under the category of players who don't get enough attention. He has 17 goals and 36 assists in 58 games this season, and his 53 points is tied with Jeff Carter and Artemi Panarin for 13th in the NHL's scoring race. The next highest point total on the Wild is Eric Staal with 45, an eight-point gap between him and Granlund. The 24-year-old forward registered his first career hat trick earlier this month, and also had a 12-game point streak just two weeks ago.

5. Ryan Hartman's closing in on 15 goals.

In Saturday's 3-1 loss to Edmonton, Hartman defended his teammate by fighting an Oilers defenseman that was practically twice his size. He called it a "no-brainer" to stick up for Tanner Kero and did well in the scrap, but it led to an Oilers power play and 10-minute misconduct which didn't do the Blackhawks any favors. He responded in a great way Sunday by scoring the game's first goal that helped his team win 5-1 in Buffalo. The next goal he scores will be No. 15, which would give the Blackhawks six 15-plus goal scorers on the year. They had only four a season ago.

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