NCAA Hoops: Cooley leads Notre Dame over USF

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NCAA Hoops: Cooley leads Notre Dame over USF

Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011
Posted 1:22 p.m. Updated 11:16 p.m.

Associated Press

TAMPA, Fla. Jack Cooley came off the bench during an early 22-0 run and finished with a career-high 18 points, leading No. 8 Notre Dame to a 78-55 rout of South Florida on Saturday.

The victory is the seventh straight for the Fighting Irish (21-4, 10-3), who have won three straight Big East road games for the first time in 10 years.

Cooley made his first nine shots giving him a stretch of 14 consecutive field goals over two games before missing a 15-footer in the closing minutes.

Carleton Scott scored 13 points and Ben Hansbrough and Tim Abromaitis had 12 apiece for Notre Dame, which had six players score in double figures.

Shaun Noriega led South Florida (8-18, 2-11) with a career-best 23 points.

Box Score
Simms-Edwards leads Bradley past Evansville 68-54

PEORIA, Ill. - Dyricus Simms-Edwards scored 25 points to lead Bradley to a 68-54 victory over Evansville on Saturday night.

Bradley's Andrew Warren added 17 points, including 3 of 4 on 3-pointers, before fouling out. Dodie Dunson scored 12 points for the Braves (9-17, 3-12 Missouri Valley), who have won three of four following an 11-game losing streak.

Colt Ryan scored 14 points to pace the Purple Aces (14-11, 8-7), who have dropped eight straight in Peoria. Ryan went 2 of 6 from 3-point range, but his teammates were 0-for-7.

Simms-Edwards converted 9 of 16, including two 3-pointers, and tied Will Egolf with eight rebounds each.

The Braves ran off 12 consecutive points for a 28-19 edge before the Purple Aces answered with eight in a row. Bradley took a 32-29 lead into halftime and extended it to 44-35 on Warren's three-point play.

Evansville got no closer than six after that.

Box Score

No. 25 West Virginia beats DePaul 82-71

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - John Flowers led West Virginia's balanced offense with 15 points and the 25th-ranked Mountaineers never trailed in beating DePaul 82-71 on Saturday.

Deniz Kilicli and Joe Mazzulla added 12 points apiece and Casey Mitchell and Truck Bryant both scored 11 for West Virginia (16-8, 7-5 Big East).

Brandon Young led DePaul (6-18, 0-12) with 14 points, while Jimmy Drew added 13 and Krys Faber and Tony Freeland both had 11.

The Mountaineers' offense woke up after averaging 58 points in their six previous games, surpassing that figure midway through the second half.

West Virginia needed a win against the league's worst team to bolster its confidence following consecutive losses to No. 9 Villanova and No. 4 Pittsburgh.

Another loss would have sent West Virginia tumbling to 11th place in the conference. Instead, the Mountaineers improved to sixth, just ahead of No. 12 Syracuse.

Five of the Mountaineers' six remaining regular-season games are against ranked teams, including Monday, at Syracuse.

The last time DePaul and West Virginia met on Jan. 4, the Mountaineers blew a 14-point lead in the second half and held on for a 67-65 road win behind Mitchell's 18 points.

DePaul had no such luck cutting into a double-digit deficit this time.

West Virginia had its highest first-half output of the season but needed some time to extend a 13-point halftime lead. The Mountaineers made just four field goals over the first 10 minutes of the second half, and Michael Bizoukas made a layup to cut DePaul's deficit to 59-48.

Jeremiah Kelly's 3-pointer with 2:48 left brought the Blue Demons within 74-67, but DePaul scored just four points the rest of the game.

West Virginia went 6 of 6 from the free throw line after that and Flowers' dunk with 49 seconds left sealed it.

West Virginia outscored DePaul 20-13 from the line and shot 53 percent (28 of 53) from the field while DePaul shot 51 percent (25 of 49).

West Virginia easily handled DePaul's full-court press and often was able to get quick open looks on the offensive end.

Flowers took an alley-oop pass from Mitchell and laid it in for a 38-28 lead with 5:50 left in the first half.

West Virginia led by as many as 16 points late in the half and 47-34 at halftime.

Box Score

Loyola Chicago beats Wisconsin-Green Bay 79-62

CHICAGO - Geoff McCammon scored 22 points and Ben Averkamp added 18 points and 10 rebounds to lead Loyola Chicago to a 79-62 victory against Wisconsin-Green Bay on Saturday.

Terrance Hill had 16 points for the Ramblers (14-12, 5-10 Horizon League), who snapped a four-game losing skid.

Greg LeSage scored 12 points and Stave Baker, Rahmon Fletcher and Jarvis Williams 10 each for the Phoenix (12-14, 6-8).

A 9-0 run early in the second half - comprised of consecutive 3-pointers, by McCammon and two by Hill - gave Loyola a 44-26 cushion, and the Ramblers later pushed the lead to 20.

Loyola enjoyed a 49-28 rebounding advantage.

Box Score
Wisconsin-Milwaukee coasts to 70-59 victory over UIC

CHICAGO - Anthony Hill scored a career-high 32 points to lead Wisconsin-Milwaukee in a 70-59 win over Illinois-Chicago on Saturday.

Hill made 12 of 23 tries from the field and 8 of 9 from the free-throw line in 28 minutes for the Panthers (15-11, 10-5 Horizon). His previous career best was 30 points against Youngstown State in December.

The Panthers, who won their fifth straight, led almost the entire way and were ahead by as many as 16 points early in the second half.

Robo Kreps led the Flames (7-20, 2-13) with 24 points and tied his career high of nine rebounds.

Paris Carter pulled down 11 rebounds for Illinois-Chicago, which took a 40-37 advantage on the boards.

Tone Boyle scored 14 points and Tony Meier 11 for Milwaukee while Kaylon Williams grabbed 12 rebounds to tie his career best.

Box Score

Kent State stops Northern Illinois 84-77

DEKALB, Ill. - Rodriquez Sherman scored 25 points on 8-of-13 shooting, and Kent State defeated Northern Illinois 84-77 to remain atop the Mid-American Conference's East Division.

Justin Greene had 18 points and eight rebounds, and Carlton Guyton added 14 points for the Golden Flashes (17-7, 8-2), who won their sixth straight game to kick off a four-game road trip.

Xavier Silas kept the Huskies (7-16, 3-8) within range, scoring 34 points and pulling down six rebounds. The senior guard was fifth in Division I in scoring at 23.7 points per game before Saturday's contest. He made 11 of 20 shots, but the rest of the Huskies made just 16 of 43 shots (37 percent).

Kent State fell behind early, 26-20, but the Golden Flashes closed out the first half with a 22-7 run for a 42-33 lead at the half. They stretched it to 62-45 with 13:30 remaining and held on. The Huskies got as close as 83-77 on a 3-pointer from Silas with 11 seconds remaining.

The Golden Flashes shot 50 percent (27 of 54) from the floor.

Box Score

Eastern Kentucky defeats Eastern Illinois 67-47

RICHMOND, Ky. - Justin Stommes scored 14 of his 20 points in the second half to lead Eastern Kentucky to a 67-47 blowout victory over Eastern Illinois on Saturday night.

The Colonels (15-11, 9-6 Ohio Valley Conference) trailed 30-28 with 17:39 left to play before going on a 23-8 run, capped by a 3-pointer from Stommes with 11:23 to go.

Eastern Kentucky followed that run by scoring 12 straight points - eight from Stommes - and turning a 51-41 lead into a 63-41 advantage with 2:19 remaining.

Jeff Johnson added 16 points and Spencer Perrin had 10 for the Colonels, who shot 69.6 percent from the field (16 of 23), including 9 for 13 from 3-point range (69.2 percent) in the second half.

Eastern Kentucky shot just 9 for 26 from the field (34.6 percent) in the first.

Jeremy Granger scored 15 points and L.C. Doss added 10 for the Panthers (8-17, 4-11), who have lost seven straight.

Box Score

Weems guides Missouri State to 68-59 win over ISU

NORMAL, Ill. - Kyle Weems scored 21 points and Missouri State defeated Illinois State 68-59 on Saturday night to keep at least a share of first place in the Missouri Valley Conference.

Weems, coming off a 27-point performance in Wednesday's 77-69 victory over Bradley, made 6 of 11 shots and pulled down six rebounds for the Bears, (20-6, 12-3), who were tied with Wichita State at 11-3 in league play heading into Saturday night's games.

Will Creekmore scored 16 points and Nafis Ricks had 12 for Missouri State, which has won three straight and recorded its second consecutive 20-win season.

Austin Hill had a game-high 23 points for the Redbirds (11-15, 3-12), who lost their fourth straight game.

Missouri State led by as many as 12 in the second half after leading 27-25 at the half. Hill's 3-pointer with 59 seconds left pulled Illinois State within 64-57, the closest they would get down the stretch.

Box Score
South Dakota State beats Western Illinois 82-61

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Jordan Dykstra had 20 points, all in the second half, to lead five South Dakota players who scored in double figures as the Jackrabbits defeated Western Illinois 82-61 on Saturday night.

Griffan Callahan had 13 points, Chad White 12 and Clint Sargent and Tony Fiegen 10 each for South Dakota (17-9, 9-6 Summit League). Sargent had nine rebounds.

Matt Lander scored 16 points and Jack Houpt 15 for the Leathernecks (7-18, 2-12). Kaimarr Price added 12 points and nine rebounds, and Jelani Johnson had 10 points.

The Jackrabbits used a 24-5 run over a 7:46 first-half stretch - Callahan made two 3-pointers during the spree, and White and Sargent added one each - to build a 39-17 lead. South Dakota increased the cushion to 28 in the second half.

Box Score

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High School coaches 'leave no stone unturned' in helping players explore next level

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Photo at top: Loyola Academy assistant coach Paul Pryma extends his hand toward a Steinmetz High School player during pregame introductions on Feb. 21. (Andres Waters/MEDILL)

High School coaches 'leave no stone unturned' in helping players explore next level

By Andres Waters
Special Contributor to CSNChicago.com

After Loyola Academy held off rival New Trier 43-40 to win the 2017 Zion-Benton regional championship, Ramblers head coach Tom Livatino had a special message for his players.

"That's the best celebration that I have ever been a part of," Livatino said. "Because everybody was completely about love. You guys love each other and we all can tell. I'm really, really proud just to be one of our coaches."

While the speech was a powerful way for Livatino to tell the players of his appreciation, he and other high school coaches engage in something much bigger to show players how proud they are: college recruiting.

In addition to time spent planning and practicing, coaches also sacrifice countless hours each week helping their players find opportunities to play at the next level.

"It's a really long part of the process, but to be honest, it's a part of the job that I absolutely love," Livatino said. "We demand so much of our players in every aspect. And, from a basketball standpoint, the least I could do is everything in my power to help them out."

Less than 48 hours after the Ramblers completed their season with a loss to Evanston Township in the Waukegan Sectional semifinal, Livatino was back in his office holding individual meetings with each player.

Starting with the 10 departing seniors, Livatino discussed the factors that go into choosing a college for high school athletes.

His conversations with the two players who already committed, senior guards Ramar Evans and Matt Lynch, focused on how they felt about their next steps. With the others, Livatino asked whether they wanted to play at the next level and, if so, which schools they wanted to attend that shared an interest in them. The conversations held with the Ramblers' juniors are very similar.

"I wasn't just looking for basketball, I was looking for a fit academically and socially," said Lynch, who committed to Division III St. Norbert College. "[Livatino] said St. Norbert would be the best fit for me. It fit everything I was looking for."

Read the full story at Medill Reports Chicago.

CSN Chicago, in partnership with Northwestern University,  features journalism by students in the graduate program at Medill School of Journalism. The students are reporters for Medill News Service. Medill faculty members edit the student work. Click here for more information about Medill.

From dunks to deliveries: Former No. 1 pick LaRue Martin's unlikely success story

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Photo at top: La Rue Martin poses for a photo at a National Basketball Retired Players Association event. (Photo courtesy of La Rue Martin)

From dunks to deliveries: Former No. 1 pick LaRue Martin's unlikely success story

By Elan Kane
Special Contributor to CSNChicago.com

LaRue Martin Jr. thought his future was set. The Portland Trail Blazers had drafted him No. 1 overall in the 1972 NBA draft. Money and fame awaited.

Fifteen years later, he started work as a UPS driver, struggling to find uniform pants that fit his 6-foot-11 frame.

"There is life after sports," Martin said. "Period."

It's been 45 years since the draft and Martin, a former Loyola University star, is now the UPS Illinois district public affairs and community services manager. He is labeled by many as one of the biggest busts in NBA draft history, but he is fine with that designation.

"I don't believe in saying anything negative, you have no control over that," Martin said. "I took care of my family, did what I had to do and I'm the type of person I can't dwell off the negatives. I can't. I kept my head up high and moved onto a positive mode of life and it has treated me very well."

Martin averaged 5.3 points and 4.6 rebounds in 14 minutes per game in just four seasons with the Trail Blazers. He blames his low numbers on his lack of playing time, but many believe he was just not good enough.

"He didn't get playing time because he [stunk]," said Boston Globe sports columnist Bob Ryan, who has covered the NBA for decades. "[Former No. 1 overall draft pick Michael] Olowokandi didn't do much but I think he did more than that."

Martin is used to the criticism.

"As a young man, reading the papers all the time, that bothered me, I must admit that," Martin said. "But I hold my head up high now because I've been very successful in the corporate world."

Read the full story at Medill Reports Chicago.

CSN Chicago, in partnership with Northwestern University,  features journalism by students in the graduate program at Medill School of Journalism. The students are reporters for Medill News Service. Medill faculty members edit the student work. Click here for more information about Medill.