Posted On: 02/16/20 5:10 PM
It was the Battle of Vincennes on the biggest stage Sunday as rivals Morgan Park and Simeon met for the CPS Championship at a neutral location of the Jordan Brand HUB23. Simeon jumped out to a lead early and never relinquished it despite a frantic run late by Morgan Park to get close. The Simeon Wolverines captured the city title by a final score of 81-76. Here are our 5 Takeaways: Simeon vs Morgan Park!
Simeon Rolling at Right Time
Everyone was talking about Simeon early in the season and wondering what was up with their record. They had been up and down throughout the season. Falling in the quarters at Pontiac. The thing is though if you look back at their 8 losses every single one of those teams is really good whether it is in-state or to a national opponent. Second half of the season they have been firing on all cylinders winning 10 straight including victories over state title contenders Morgan Park (twice), Collinsville, and Curie in that span. WOW! This was a young group at the start of the season with sophomore Jaylen Drane taking on a big role, Ahamad Bynum becoming the primary scorer, and senior Jeremiah Williams trying to find where he fit in after transferring from St. Laurence. They have also saw their role guys find their ways to get on the floor and flourish. Rob Smith wins another city title and they are looking to do more damage in March!
Wolverines Wings Dominant
The biggest reason Simeon won this game was the play of their two wings. Let’s start with the DePaul commit Ahamad Bynum. The microwave scorer extraordinaire did his thing connecting on six from beyond the three point arc. He is one of the best iso scorers in the state at creating space for his shot and letting it fly. That is exactly what he did against Morgan Park all game long. Tough Chicago scorer that gets buckets in bunches! He had 22 points. The top unsigned senior wing in Illinois showcased what he is all about on the biggest of stages. Jeremiah Williams is a 6’5” small forward that is ultimate utility guy at a mid-major. He rebounds very well for a wing and brings tenacity on the defensive end guarding both on the perimeter as well as in the paint. Offensively he is best slashing for floaters, getting on the offensive glass, and knocked down a pair of mid-range jumpers en route to 21 points.
Role Players Step Up for Wolverines
Those were the stars, but everyone contributed in the Wolverines win. Elite sophomore Jaylen Drane played both on and off the ball displaying his explosive burst and speed getting to the rim for 10 points. Class of 2021 shooting guard Fred Poole has had a nice couple weeks including scoring 10 points on Sunday. He rebounds well from his wing spot and can hit an open shot. Avyion Morris is a sophomore that has changed things for Simeon once they inserted him into the starting lineup. His speed in transition and ability to knock down threes off the catch ignited the offensive. He was outstanding on Miller despite giving up a significant height advantage as he is listed at only 5’8”. Morris finished with 10 points.
Adam Miller Foul Trouble
Simeon was rolling early and that was compounded even more on the Morgan Park side as their star All-American Adam Miller racked up three fouls in the first six minutes of the game. He missed the majority of the first half after he picked that foul up. The Illini commit is a dominant scorer that brings so much energy to the Mustangs. He showed flashes in the second half hitting a few big threes netting 15 points in the title game. No doubt this was a huge factor in the game.
Mustangs Guard Duo Have Strong Outings
With Miller sidelined in the first half it was all about 2021shooting guard Brandon Weston for Morgan Park. The #3 junior prospect in the state is an explosive two guard that is an elite level rebounder. He has played with such a high-motor all season for this team. Got on the offensive glass for multiple put backs. Also put his head down getting to the rim for scores or getting fouled. Spent a considerable amount of time at the charity stripe on the night. He had 20 points. In the second half it was the Marcus Watson show. The lefty point guard who is headed to Wake Forest put on an epic performance trying to get the Mustangs back in the game. He used his quickness defensively creating turnovers and then turning them into points on the other end with his patented acrobatic layups. Also connected on a few sweet pull ups. Crisp passer that has vision to find shooters and guys running the floor. He had 21 points.