Wil­liams the key to Bloom’s vic­tory

Daily Southtown (Sunday) - - SPORTS - By Tony Baranek

Ju­nior guard Ke­shawn Wil­liams wasn’t nec­es­sar­ily sup­posed to be the main op­tion Fri­day on what turned into the game-win­ning play for Bloom.

A lot more­was drawn up. But Wil­liams didn’t fol­low the script.

“The play we were sup­posed to run wasn’t there,” Wil­liams said.

Op­tionNo. 2?

“I saw an open­ing, so I just took it,” he said. “I usu­ally do it a lot. I’m used to it.”

Wil­liams ne­go­ti­ated the en­tire right side of the lane be­fore softly bank­ing the ball off the back­board with 2:28 re­main­ing in over­time.

It would prove to be the last two points in Bloom’s 60-58 vic­tory over Home­wood-Floss­moorin the cham­pi­onshipgame of the ChicagoHeights Clas­sic.

Wil­liams fin­ished with a team-high 22 points for Bloom (4-0). Dono­vanNewby added 16 points, while Emani Burgess con­tributed five re­bounds.

Se­nior guard/for­ward Isaac Stan­back led H-F (3-1) with 26 points and 13 re­bounds. RJ Ogom added 14 points.

“It means a lot to win this,” Wil­liams said. “We haven’t won this cham­pi­onship in a long time.”

In 2011, Bloom also de­feated H-F in the ti­tle game with a 70-65 de­ci­sion in dou­bleOT.

WhileWil­liams was the hero this time, Newby was one of the big rea­sons Bloom took the game in­toOT.

The ju­nior guard ral­lied the Blaz­ing Tro­jans dur­ing the fourth quar­ter with three 3point­ers. Two were back-to­back near mid­court from well be­hind the 3-point line.

Af­ter the se­cond shot swished, Newby put his hands to­gether and smiled as he went back on de­fense.

“Iwas­work­ing onmy shot all sum­mer,” Newby said. “I was kind of dis­ap­pointed ear­lier. I missed a cou­ple, but my team­mates had my back. They told me to keep on shoot­ing.

“That’s what I did. I foundmy rhythm and just kept shoot­ing and knock­ing them down.”

In all, the Blaz­ing Tro­jans con­nected on eight 3-point­ers. They didn’t do much pen­e­trat­ing against H-F’s zone de­fense.

Wil­liams, who also hit two 3-point­ers, was an ex­cep­tion when it counted the most.

“He had a big bas­ket and a big game,” Bloom coach Dante Mad­dox Sr. said ofWil­liams. “In the first half, when we couldn’t get a bas­ket, hewas the only one play­ing.

“This game was an anom­aly. It wasn’t the norm. Two of our four lead­ers just didn’t have it. But Ke­shawn had some big bas­kets and Dono­van had some big bas­kets.”

H-F had op­por­tu­ni­ties to win the game at the free-throw line, but missed three of four shots in

the fi­nal 20 sec­onds of OT. The Vik­ings also missed back-to-back 3point­ers at the end ofOT.

But the free throws were the biggest­prob­lem. The Vik­ings shot 18for-35 at the line.

“It’s been con­ta­gious all week,” H-F coach Marc Con­dotti said. “We haven’t had a night where we shot bet­ter than 50 or 60 per­cent. Ob­vi­ously it came back and got us this time.”

Mar­ian Catholic 73, Hill­crest 67: Ahron Uh­lis scored 21 points forMari-

an (3-1) in the third-place game and Eli­jah Jones added 16. Dy­lan West scored 21 points for HIll­crest (2-2).

Thorn­wood 73, Rich

Cen­tral 68: Chris­tian Sim­mons scored 20 points for Thorn­wood (2-2) in the fifth-place game. Zachary Carr added 17 points and Jeremiah Tarver had 16.

T. F. South 58, Voca

tional 49: Eli­jah Ste­wart scored 20 points for T.F. South (1-3) in the sev­enth-place game.

GARY MIDDENDORF/DAILY SOUTH­TOWN

Bloom Town­ship’s Ke­shawn Wil­liams lays in a bas­ket Fri­day against Home­wood-Floss­moor in the fi­nal of the Chicago Heights Clas­sic.

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