Now that Thanksgiving tournament week is over and teams are starting to find their identities, regular-season play really gets underway this week, and this weekend has some great matchups to look forward to. Comcast SportsNet will have cameras throughout the city and suburbs Friday night for the basketball premiere of High School Lites at 11 p.m. We will also have a preview of Saturday’s Chicago Elite Classic at the UIC Pavilion, along with the debut of "Drive: Whitney Young."
Here is a snapshot of each game we will profile on Friday's show:
Thursday's Game of the Night
De La Salle at No. 20 Fenwick, 7 p.m.
This is a big game for No. 20 Fenwick (2-1) at home against a talented De La Salle team. Without senior wing Scott Lindsey, who is out until Christmas with a broken leg, Fenwick will rely on a young backcourt that starts sophomore Mike Smith, who is being asked to run a new system put in place by new coach Rick Malnati. De La Salle (2-2) will try to get back on track after a so-so first week and rely on juniors Brandon Hutton, Karl Harris and Martez Cameron for a lot of production.
Leyden at No. 11 Proviso East, 6 p.m.
Fresh off a 4-0 start and title in the City of Washington Invitational at the State Farm Tournament of Champions, the No. 11 Pirates face Leyden at home. Senior guard Jevon Carter, a West Virginia commit, is off to a huge start on the season, going for games of 30 and 29 points already this season. Leyden is 3-1 on the young season and hoping to trip up Proviso East by packing the paint and hoping the Pirates hit jumpers.
Minooka at No. 25 Plainfield North, 6:30 p.m.
Also scoring at a high clip this season is Plainfield North junior forward Trevor Stumpe. Stumpe averaged 30.5 points per game during Plainfield North's 4-0 start at the Joliet West tournament. Minooka is 3-1 with a loss to a very good Joliet Central team and could be a tough out for Plainfield North.
Thornton at Thornwood, 6:30 p.m.
Two talented south suburban teams clash in this one, with Thornwood coming off of a 2-2 start in the Chicago Heights Classic, led by Bradley commit and senior forward Donte Thomas. Thornton (1-2) will look to win against its Southwest Suburban Red rival with the help of guard Justin Taylor, one of the league's best players along with Thomas.
Joliet Central at No. 21 Bolingbrook, 7 p.m.
Joliet Central (4-0) won the WJOL tournament and very nearly cracked the CSN Preps Basketball Power Rankings, but it'll get another chance to crack those rankings if it can beat the 21st-ranked Bolingbrook Raiders on the road. Bolingbrook went 2-1 at a tough Decatur tournament and will look to win a home game against a tough opponent.
Stagg at Homewood-Flossmoor, 7 p.m.
The Homewood-Flossmoor Vikings (3-2) played some really good competition during the first week of the season in the Chicago Heights Classic and held off a feisty Hales team to win third place while also losing to Morton during Sunday's Team Rose Basketball Classic at Curie. Stagg (4-0) is undefeated and won their own Thanksgiving tournament, and Max Strus — one of the area's better unsigned seniors as a 6-foot-5 shooting guard — averaged 24.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and three assists a game for Stagg.
No. 17 St. Viator at Wheaton Academy, 7:30 p.m.
Wheaton Academy (3-1) was ranked in our preseason power rankings, and they don't usually face opponents of St. Viator's caliber very often. The No. 17 Lions (3-1) are talented, especially at guard with senior Ore Arogundade and juniors Roosevelt Smart and Mark Falotico, but fell to Prospect and will have to deal with Wheaton Academy's length. Senior Gordon Behr is a 6-foot-8 inside/outside threat, junior Chandler Fuzak is 6-foot-10 and junior Josh Ruggles spaces the floor with his shooting.
Prospect at Hersey, 7:30 p.m.
Prospect (3-2) went on the road and played a state-title contender in No. 5 Stevenson the other night and lost, so they should be prepared to go into Hersey for this one. The Huskies (2-2) have already faced some tough north suburban teams last week and should be prepared for their near-rival on Friday night.