Preps Talk

Fenwick beats Bloomington to advance to Class 3A title game

Fenwick beats Bloomington to advance to Class 3A title game

Fenwick will play for its first boys basketball state championship after the Friars beat Bloomington, 67-52, on Friday in the first Class 3A IHSA state semifinal in Peoria.

Taking a 30-23 lead into halftime, Fenwick (30-4) held off a Bloomington run in the third quarter as they re-gained control and pushed the lead back into double-digits in the fourth quarter.

Freshman D.J. Steward continued his postseason ascension into stardom as he finished with 23 points, eight rebounds and three assists to pace Fenwick. Steward was 10-for-21 from the field on Friday afternoon. Senior Jamal Nixon also had a strong game for Fenwick as he finished with 18 points and nine rebounds while senior Jacob Keller had eight points, eight assists and seven rebounds.

Bloomington (26-5) was led by sophomore Chris Payton as he led the Purple Raiders with 21 points and nine rebounds. Patrick Fisher also had 10 points for Bloomington. 

Fenwick has now won 17 consecutive games as they are in their first downstate appearance since 1998.

The Friars have not lost to a Class 3A team all season as they advance to Saturday's Class 3A state championship game against Morgan Park. That Class 3A state championship game can be viewed live on CSN at approximately 12:45 p.m. as it will follow the Class 3A third-place game.

High School Lites Podcast: What is the greatest high school football rivalry in Illinois?

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High School Lites Podcast: What is the greatest high school football rivalry in Illinois?

Excellent teams. Tradition. Locality. Fan base animosity.

They’re the cornerstones of what make a great high school football rivalry. In this edition of CSN Chicago’s High School Lites podcast, Joe Collins, Jared Storck and “Edgy” Tim O’Halloran dive into this topic and discuss which ones stand out above the rest in Illinois.

The panel also breaks down the newly-released IHSA playoff outlook and discuss the early candidates for offensive player of the year. They’ll also look ahead to Friday’s matchups, which feature several teams jostling for playoff position.

Listen to the High School Lites Podcast below:

Curie senior guard Maurice Commander commits to UT Chattanooga

Curie senior guard Maurice Commander commits to UT Chattanooga

Curie senior guard Maurice Commander ended his recruitment on Tuesday night by committing to UT Chattanooga on Twitter.

"I chose UT-Chattanooga, because deep down inside, I knew I could trust (new Mocs head coach Lamont) Paris and the staff," Commander said to CSN. "They believed in me from the jump! I know for a fact that I could go to war with this coaching staff."

The 6-foot-0 Commander was one of the area's best point guards and perimeter shooters last season as he helped Marist become a consistent presence in the CSN Preps Power Rankings.

Transferring to Public League powerhouse Curie this offseason, Commander made his presence immediately felt with the Condors this summer when he buried five first-half three-pointers against Simeon during June's annual Riverside-Brookfield Shootout. 

Curie eventually went on to win the loaded summer event as they once again look like a major threat for a city and state championship this season with Commander as a major piece. 

Commander selected UT Chattanooga over his other finalist, UC-Davis, as Paris is very familiar with recruiting the Chicagoland area. 

A former assistant coach at Wisconsin since 2010 before taking the UT Chattanooga head job this spring, Paris recruited Illinois before for the Badgers as he is plenty familiar with the area.