Buzzer beater pushes Niles North to victory

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Buzzer beater pushes Niles North to victory

By Dan Shalin
YourSeason.com

Niles North junior Billy Voitik tipped in teammate Malachi Nixs missed three-pointer at the buzzer to give the visiting Vikings a dramatic 56-54 win over Glenbrook North on Friday night in Northbrook.The Vikings (13-5, 4-2) trailed by 11 points, 29-18, at halftime and by as many as 14 early in the third quarter.But Niles North stormed back and took a brief 41-40 lead in the third.Glenbrook North junior Kurt Karis hit a three-pointer at the third-quarter buzzer to put the Spartans (13-4, 4-2) up 43-41 entering the fourth.The lead went back and forth in the final quarter. The Vikings had a chance to put the game away with some late free throws, but did not convert.The contest was tied at 54-54 when Nix (team-high 18 points) launched a 35-foot three pointer in the waning seconds. He missed, but Voitik was there to be the hero.We played a great second half. It was a really disappointing in the first half, Niles North head coach Glenn Olson said. We figured some things out in the second half. It also helps when youre making shots.We had some good looks in the first half, but they didnt go down. We really challenged the kids at halftime to focus on what we believe in as a team. We were able to go out and do a much better job in the second half, and the scoreboard reflected that.Niles North hosts Mather at 6 p.m. Saturday. Glenbrook North returns to action at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday when they host Prospect.

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Five Things to Watch: Blackhawks host Lightning tonight on CSN

Five Things to Watch: Blackhawks host Lightning tonight on CSN

Watch as the Blackhawks take on the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight on CSN and streaming live on CSNChicago.com. Coverage begins at 7 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. Grab the first goal.

The Blackhawks have scored the game's first goal in seven of the last eight games, and of those seven, they've won six of them. Meanwhile, the Lightning have scored the first goal only 17 times in 48 games this season, and are 12-5-1 in those games. They're 9-17-4 when they allow the first goal, so getting out to a lead first will be important against a struggling Lightning team looking for signs of life.

2. Will the floodgates open for Jonathan Toews?

After a four-point game in a 4-2 win over Vancouver, the Blackhawks captain matched his point total over his previous nine games. He's up to 26 points on the season, which is now fifth among Chicago forwards. When Toews has offensive droughts, they usually last longer than they should. But when he gets hot, he gets extremely hot. Perhaps we'll see the floodgates open offensively.

3. A chance for the team lead in scoring.

With an empty-net goal on Sunday, Marian Hossa tied Artem Anisimov for the team-lead with 18 goals. Artemi Panarin is right behind with 17, and Patrick Kane isn't far either at 15. The Blackhawks had four 20-goal scorers last season, and haven't had more than that since the 2013-14 season. They're definitely on pace to hit four, but could they surprass that? Richard Panik, who scored another goal Sunday as well, is fifth with 11 goals while Ryan Hartman has 10. Toews is at eight, but a flurry after a drought could make things interesting.

4. The triplets reunited?

In an effort to jumpstart a struggling offense, Lightning coach Jon Cooper reunited the triplets line of Tyler Johnson, Nikita Kucherov and Ondrej Palat that was so successful during their 2015 playoff run in their latest game, a 5-3 loss to Arizona. It's unclear whether they will begin tonight's game on the same line, but if not, it's worth watching throughout the game whether they do. The Blackhawks have been coming at opponents in waves lately, so Cooper could look to separate the three to distribute the scoring.

5. Take advantage on special teams.

The Lightning have racked up the fifth-most penalty minutes in the league, and own a bottom-10 penalty kill unit at 80.1 percent. The Blackhawks are the second-least penalized team, and have converted on 17.9 percent of their power plays, which sits at 16th. But they haven't scored one on the man advantage in five straight games, going 0-for-9 during that span. Here's a chance to change that.

[SHOP: Gear up, Blackhawks fans!]

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