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Boys Basketball: Mt. Carmel, Brother Rice each win twice over weekend

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By Steve Millar
Correspondent

The Ciaravino brothers are making a huge impact for Mount Carmel in their first varsity season.

Anthony, a junior guard, and Angelo, a sophomore forward, are both in the starting lineup for the Caravan and producing at a high level. Anthony is not surprised.

“We kind of had an idea of this coming with all our offseason work and with us working every day together,” he said. “Now it’s all coming full circle and we’re looking good.”

The duo led the way in undefeated Mount Carmel’s 70-43 rout of host Marist at the Chicago Catholic League-East Suburban Catholic Conference Challenge on Dec. 11.

Angelo Ciaravino had 22 points and seven rebounds, while Anthony added 16 points and five rebounds. DeAndre Craig scored 15 points.

Angelo set the tone against the RedHawks, scoring 11 points in the first quarter as the Caravan raced to a 23-12 lead.

“We knew we had to come out with energy, right off the bat,” Angelo Ciaravino said. “We were just running up and down, getting up the floor. We had good pace starting out.

“We’ve been a little flat in the first half of some of our games, so we needed some energy in the first half.”

Xavier Sulaiman led Marist (5-3) with 15 points. Leirre Collier, Kaden White and Achilles Anderson had six points each.

Mount Carmel followed up the blowout with another win Dec. 12 at the Team Rose Classic, beating Westinghouse 61-48 behind 20 points from Craig and 14 from Anthony Ciaravino to improve to 10-0.

Mount Carmel coach Phil Segroves has been impressed with the Ciaravino brothers.

“They come from a basketball family,” Segroves said. “Their father, Tony, was the [1988] Lawless Award winner (for Catholic League Player of the Year) at De La Salle, played at Green Bay. They’ve been training with their dad and people from their neighborhood since they were born. They were born with basketballs in their hand.

“They have an uncanny ability to score and play defense, but also their basketball IQ is off the charts.”

After slowing down a bit offensively in the second quarter but still taking a 37-19 lead to halftime in the Marist game, the Caravan caught fire again in the third with a 24-point quarter to turn it into a rout.

Anthony Ciaravino scored 10 points in the third, knocking down a pair of 3-pointers.

“We wanted to assert who we are,” Anthony said. “That’s what we did and that’s why we got a big win.

“Our chemistry is crazy. Every day, we’re working together and getting better.”

The RedHawks won two games earlier in the week, beating Marian Central Catholic 60-49 on Dec. 10. Sulaiman led Marist with 22 points.

Sulaiman scored 18 points, while Collier and White added 15 each in a 56-43 victory over St. Laurence on Dec. 7.

Brother Rice 58, Marian Catholic 51
Brother Rice led by as many as 18 points in the second half, then hold off a late surge from the Spartans to get the win Saturday at the Chicago Catholic League-East Suburban Catholic Challenge.

Junior guard Ahmad Henderson led the Crusaders with 19 points. Khalil Ross added 12 points and 12 rebounds and Tre Dowdell scored 10 points.

Rice (8-1) followed up the victory with another win Dec. 12 at the Team Rose Classic, beating Joliet West 55-44 behind 16 points from Henderson and 11 from Ross.

Against Marian (6-3), the Crusaders rolled to a 15-4 lead after the first quarter. Pete McShane, who finished with eight points, hit a pair of 3-pointers to spark the fast start.

The lead remained in double digits until Marian Catholic went on an 8-0 run to pull within 44-40 with 4:30 left.

Henderson answered, driving and banking in a fall-away jumper while being fouled. He converted the 3-point play to stretch the lead back to seven.

“He got his fourth foul, we took him out, put him back in for offense and he got that crazy [3-point play],” Brother Rice coach Bobby Frasor said of Henderson. “He just makes so many plays. When the ball is in hands, he’s in control.”

Henderson knew he had to step up.

“It was kind of a breakdown play,” he said. “I got a switch on a guy and we needed a bucket. They were on a run, so I had to go make a play.”

Brother Rice had to close out the game without Henderson, however. He fouled out with 2:25 to go and the Crusaders leading 51-44.

Dowdell hit four free throws and Nick Niego hit three down the stretch to seal the win.

“Everything we’ve talked about in preseason is how people are going to try to get Ahmad out of there or take the ball out of his hands,” Frasor said. “For us to actually have a game where it happens and we needed other guys to step up, handle the ball and make free throws, I thought it was a huge stepping stone.

“I think it’s going to give guys a lot of confidence going forward.”

 

Carmel 56, St. Rita 48
Despite a big performance by Illinois recruit Morez Johnson, St. Rita fell short Dec. 11 at the Chicago Catholic League-East Suburban Catholic Challenge.

Johnson, a sophomore forward, finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Mustangs (6-3). Kaiden Space scored nine points and James Brown contributed eight points and eight rebounds.

St. Rita could not contain Carmel’s high-powered duo of Bryce Moore (24 points) and Asher Jackson (23 points).

Down 46-34 early in the fourth quarter, the Mustangs went on a 7-0 run to pull within five. Amari Edwards hit a 3-pointer, Jordan Chandler scored on a put-back and Melvin Bell threw down a dunk.

That was as close as the Mustangs could get.

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