NCAA Hoops: Purdue too much for Illini

NCAA Hoops: Purdue too much for Illini

Tuesday, March 1, 2011
CSNChicago.comAssociated Press
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) Minutes after No. 6 Purdue's 75-67 victory over Illinois, the band played a version of DJ Khaled's "All I Do is Win" before the school honored JaJuan Johnson and E'Twaun Moore on Senior Night.

The song title was fitting.

Johnson scored 23 points and Moore added 18 as the Boilermakers (25-5, 14-3) finished undefeated at Mackey Arena and remained in contention for the Big Ten title.

Johnson and Moore came off the court to a standing ovation with 3.6 seconds left.

"Tonight was a special night for us," Moore said. "It was our last night playing in front of our home crowd. Right before the game, I was nervous. I tried not to think about it, but I couldn't help it. I'm glad we got a victory and everything turned out well."

Johnson said the team takes pride in its 16-0 home record.

"I think it says a lot about how we protect our home court," he said. "It also says a lot about Mackey in general, with all the fans getting loud. It's definitely one of the loudest arenas in the country, and this is definitely a big advantage for us every time we play here."

Illinois coach Bruce Weber said Johnson and Moore were too much to handle.

"I think they have two special seniors that rose to the occasion and made some big shots down the stretch," he said.
Complete Recap, Box Score

UIC eliminated from Horizon tourney

CLEVELAND (AP) Norris Cole scored 26 points as Cleveland State cruised to a 73-61 win over Illinois-Chicago on Tuesday night in the first round of the Horizon League tournament.

The third-seeded Vikings (25-7), who claimed a share of their first Horizon regular-season title Saturday, set a school record with their 16th home win.

Cleveland State will play No. 6 seed Wright State in the second round on Friday in Milwaukee.

The Flames (7-24), the No. 10 seed, ended the season with their fifth straight loss.

The Vikings shot 50 percent in the first half (14 of 28) en route to a 40-23 lead at the break.

The Flames got within five points twice, the last time at 51-46 with 8:55 to go, then Cole answered with a 3-pointer.

Jeremy Montgomery added 17 points for the Vikings and Trevon Harmon had 13.

Paul Carter led Illinois-Chicago with 18 points, hitting 13 of 16 free throws.

Complete Recap, Box Score
Loyola eliminated in first round

DETROIT (AP) Chase Simon scored 19 points, leading six Detroit players in double figures, and the Titans defeated Loyola of Chicago 90-69 in the first round of the Horizon League tournament Tuesday night.

The Titans (17-15), seeded fifth in the 10-team Horizon League, will face fourth seed Valparaiso in the tournament quarterfinals on Friday in Milwaukee.

Ray McCallum had 16 points, Jason Calliste scored 14 and Nick Minnerath added 12 points. Chris Blake scored 11 points and Eli Holman scored 10 for Detroit. The Titans shot 52 percent from the field in the game, and made 25 of 29 free throws, including 8 for 8 by Calliste.

Ben Averkamp led Loyola with 15 points. Terrance Hill scored 12 points and Andy Polka had 10 points and 13 rebounds for the Ramblers (16-15), who were the eighth seed in the tournament.

Complete Recap, Box Score

Leathernecks drop 13th straight as noose tightens

MACOMB, Ill. (AP) Jovonni Shuler scored 21 points Tuesday night as Savannah State beat Western Illinois 51-47, handing the Leathernecks their 13th consecutive loss.

Joshua Montgomery added 13 points and Jyles Smith 12 rebounds for the Tigers (11-18), whose victory in the nonconference game was their fourth in a row and ninth in their last 10.

Kaimarr Price scored 12 points and Matt Lander 10 for the Leathernecks (7-23). Their season is over after failing to qualify for the Summit League tournament.

Savannah State won despite shooting 34.5 percent and making only 3 of 17 3-pointers.

Western Illinois led 26-21 at intermission, but the Tigers' 17-5 run forged a 38-31 lead with 9:56 left. Montgomery scored seven and Shuler six in the spurt.

Emeka Okafor Jr.'s three-point play brought the Leathernecks within 46-45 with 1:52 to go, but Shuler scored Savannah State's last five points.

The Tigers close against North Carolina Central.

Complete Recap, Box Score

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Northern Illinois adds running back Fotis Kokosioulis

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USA TODAY

Northern Illinois adds running back Fotis Kokosioulis

Northern Illinois University added it's fourth known verbal commitment today in its growing Class of 2018.

Maine South junior running back Fotis Kokosioulis (5-foot-8, 165 pounds) added an offer from the Huskies on Tuesday after making a spring practice visit, and today he gave head coach Rod Carey his verbal commitment.

"I chose NIU because it's been a school that I've liked for awhile now," Kokosioulis said moments ago. "I like the facilities at NIU, the stadium and everything else they have to offer. I also really like all the coaches at NIU. I felt that even if I got more offers I would've still chose NIU over other schools. I know that there are bigger school and programs but I feel that I just fit in well at NIU, so I committed."

Kokosioulis, who was an All-State performer for the Class 8A state champion Maine South Hawks in 2016, is now the fourth known in-state verbal commitment for Rod Carey and the Huskies and the fifth known commitment overall. Kokosioulis joins Andrew defensive end Mike DeHaan, Plainfield East defensive end Jack Sullivan and Danville tight end Julian Pearl in the NIU Huskies in-state Class of 2018.

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.