Weekend Wrap — Brunson puts on a show

Weekend Wrap — Brunson puts on a show

Every week during the high school basketball season, recruiting blogger MATT DANIELS will give a wrap-up of how Illini commits and targets fared during the previous week's worth of games.

THE RECRUITS
LERON BLACK, a senior forward from Memphis (Tenn.) White Station High School who signed with Illinois on Nov. 15 after committing on Sept. 1, and the Spartans opened AAA state tournament play with a 55-51 win on Saturday night at home against Germantown (Tenn.) Houston High School. Black dropped in 21 points during the Region 8 AAA quarterfinal victory. The win Saturday came after White Station won the District 16 AAA tournament last week. White Station beat Memphis (Tenn.) Hamilton High School 71-68 last Wednesday night at home, which came after the Spartans opened district play with an 80-71 home win against Memphis (Tenn.) Overton High School last Monday night. Black had 19 points against Hamilton and 29 points in the win against Overton. Black and the Spartans (29-1) continue postseason play at 7:45 p.m. this Tuesday against Memphis (Tenn.) Overton High School at Memphis (Tenn.) Central High School in a Region 8 AAA semifinal game.

MICHAEL FINKE, a senior forward from Champaign (Ill.) Centennial High School who signed with Illinois on Nov. 13 after committing on Dec. 12, 2012, and the Chargers kept their winning ways intact, winning their 12th straight game with a 73-41 home victory against Normal (Ill.) West High School on Friday night. Finke scored 16 points and had seven rebounds. The win against Normal West came after Centennial won 70-63 at Decatur (Ill.) MacArthur High School last Wednesday night, with Finke scoring 20 points. Finke and the Chargers (21-4) are slated to play at Kankakee (Ill.) High school at 6:30 p.m. this Tuesday before ending the regular season at 7:30 p.m. this Friday at home against Decatur (Ill.) Eisenhower High School.

AARON JORDAN, a junior shooting guard from Plainfield (Ill.) East High School who committed to Illinois on Jan. 4, and the Bengals had three games last week. And won all three. Plainfield East beat Naperville (Ill.) Neuqua Valley 61-58 at home on Saturday night to Naperville (Ill.) Neuqua Valley, with Jordan scoring 28 points. The Bengals won 55-25 at Romeoville (Ill.) High School on Friday night, with Jordan scoring 11 points. Prior to Friday, Plainfield East beat Oswego (Ill.) High School 62-57 at home last Tuesday night. Jordan had 19 points in the win. Jordan and the Bengals (17-9) are set to end the regular season at 6:30 p.m. this Thursday at home against Plainfield (Ill.) Central High School.

D.J. WILLIAMS, a junior forward from Chicago Simeon High School who committed to Illinois on Nov. 5, and the Wolverines lost 65-56 to Lincolnshire (Ill.) Stevenson High School on Saturday night as part of the City-Suburban Shootout at Niles West High School in Skokie, Ill. Williams had seven points for Simeon (18-6).

THE TARGETS
CARLTON BRAGG, a junior power forward from Cleveland Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School, and the Vikings ended the regular season with a 72-68 loss at Cleveland Central Catholic High School on Friday night. Bragg had 16 points. Prior to that, Villa Angela-St. Joseph lost 82-76 at home to Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward High School on Thursday night, with Bragg scoring 18 points and grabbing nine rebounds. Bragg, who has offers from Illinois, Akron, Cincinnati, Cleveland State, Connecticut, Dayton, DePaul, Georgetown, Indiana, Kansas, Louisville, Maryland, Michigan State, Missouri, North Carolina State, Ohio State, Texas, UCLA, West Virginia and Wisconsin, and the Vikings (13-8) are scheduled to open the Division III state playoffs at 6 p.m. this Tuesday at home against Oberlin (Ohio) High School.

JALEN BRUNSON, a junior point guard from Lincolnshire (Ill.) Stevenson High School, and the Patriots defeated Chicago Simeon High School 65-56 on Saturday night as part of the City-Suburban Shootout at Niles West High School in Skokie, Ill., with Brunson scoring 20 points along with adding seven rebounds and five assists. The win against the Wolverines came after the Patriots pulled off an epic 95-93 double overtime win at Lake Forest (Ill.) High School on Friday night, with Brunson scoring a whopping 57 points. He became the program's all-time leading scorer in that win, too. Brunson, who has offers from Illinois, Connecticut, Creighton, DePaul, Oklahoma State, Purdue, SMU, Temple, Tulsa, Virginia and Xavier, and the Patriots (25-1) end the regular season at 7 p.m. this Wednesday at North Chicago (Ill.) High School.

JALEN COLEMAN, a junior shooting guard at La Lumiere School in La Porte, Ind., and the Lakers ended the regular season with three wins at its own Laker Invitational. La Lumiere beat St. Louis Christian 75-67 on Saturday, with Coleman scoring 27 points. The win Saturday came after the Lakers beat Athlete Institute out of Ontario 68-42 on Friday, with Coleman scoring 34 points. The Lakers opened the tournament with a 79-72 win against 22-Foot Academy out of Greenville, S.C., with Coleman scoring 25 points. Coleman, who has offers from Illinois, Arizona, Cincinnati, Indiana, Memphis, Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Providence, Purdue, UCLA and Xavier, and the Lakers wrapped up the regular season with a 21-2 record.

NOJEL EASTERN, a freshman guard from Evanston (Ill.) High School, and the Wildkits beat Skokie (Ill.) Niles West High School 54-43 at home on Friday night. Eastern, who has interest from Illinois, Creighton, Duke, Indiana, Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State and Xavier, among others, and the Wildkits (18-8) will end the regular season at 7:30 p.m. this Tuesday at Des Plaines (Ill.) Maine West High School.
 
HYRON EDWARDS, a junior point guard at East Chicago (Ind.) Central High School, and the Cardinals lost 88-79 at South Bend (Ind.) Adams High School on Saturday afternoon, which came after a 58-53 victory at home against Hammond (Ind.) Bishop Noll Institute on Friday night. Edwards scored 17 points against Bishop Noll. Edwards, who has offers from Illinois, Indiana and Purdue, and the Cardinals (11-7) will resume play at 7:30 p.m. at Gary (Ind.) Bowman Academy this Tuesday before ending the regular season at 5:30 p.m. this Friday at South Bend (Ind.) Washington High School.

MONTAQUE GILL-CAESAR, a junior small forward at Huntington (W. Va.) Prep and the Irish routed Wesley Christian School out of Allen, Ky., 137-60 on Thursday night at home, which came after a 79-40 win last Wednesday against Riverside Christian Academy out of Lumberton, N.C., at the LG Big House Shootout in Charleston, W. Va. Gill-Caesar had 27 points, eight rebounds and seven assists for the Irish against Wesley Christian and had five points against Riverside Christian. Gill-Caesar, who might reclassify for the Class of 2014 and who has offers from Alabama, Baylor, Kansas, Memphis, Missouri, Providence and West Virginia for the Class of 2014 and offers from Illinois and Ohio State for the Class of 2015, and the Irish (24-4) are slated to play at Teays Valley Christian (W. Va.) at 6 p.m. this Thursday before hosting Bull City Prep out of Durham, N.C., at 2 p.m. this Saturday and Legacy Charter out of Greenville, S.C., at 3 p.m. this Sunday.

KAIN HARRIS, a junior shooting guard at Chicago Morgan Park High School, and the Mustangs had the week off. Harris, who has offers from Bradley, DePaul, Minnesota, South Carolina and West Virginia, along with interest from Illinois, Creighton, Iowa State, SMU and Tennessee, and the Mustangs are 17-6 on the season.

CHARLES MATTHEWS, a junior combo guard at Chicago St. Rita High School, and the Mustangs won the consolation title of the Chicago Catholic League Tournament, knocking off New Lenox (Ill.) Providence Catholic High School 72-62 on Friday night at home, with Matthews scoring 13 points. Prior to Friday, the Mustangs outlasted Wilmette (Ill.) Loyola Academy 48-44 in double overtime at home last Wednesday night. Matthews had 14 points in the win. Matthews, who has offers from Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Marquette, Michigan State, Ohio State, SMU and Wisconsin, and the Mustangs (17-7) are slated to end the regular season at 7 p.m. this Friday at home against Westchester (Ill.) St. Joseph High School.

LUWANE PIPKINS, a junior guard at Chicago Bogan High School, and the Bengals had the week off. Pipkins, who has offers from Bradley, Illinois-Chicago, Massachusetts and Northern Illinois, along with interest from Illinois, Creighton, DePaul, Indiana State, LaSalle and Valparaiso, and the Bengals have a 24-4 record.

NICK RAKOCEVIC, a sophomore forward at Westschester (Ill.) St. Joseph High School, and the Chargers placed fourth at the Chicago Catholic League Tournament on Saturday after losing 60-54 to Oak Park (Ill.) Fenwick High School on Saturday. Prior to Saturday, the Chargers lost 50-48 at home to Chicago Mt. Carmel High School last Wednesday night in the tournament semifinals. Rakocevic had 20 points and 10 rebounds in the loss. Rakocevic, who has offers from Creighton, Miami (Fla.) and Northern Illinois, along with interest from Illinois, Florida, Iowa, Marquette and Northwestern, among others, and the Chargers (20-6) are scheduled to end the regular season at 7 p.m. this Friday at Chicago St. Rita High School.

DIAMOND STONE, a junior center at Whitefish Bay (Wis.) Dominican High School, and the Green Knights ended the regular season with a 69-43 home win against Kenosha (Wis.) St. Joseph High School on Saturday, with Stone scoring 23 points and grabbing 17 rebounds. Prior to Saturday, Stone delivered 22 points and eight rebounds during Dominican's 61-33 win last Tuesday night at Somers (Wis.) Shoreland Lutheran High School. Stone, who has offers from Illinois, Arizona, Connecticut, DePaul, Duke, Georgetown, Indiana, Marquette, Maryland, Tennessee, Texas A&M, UCLA and Wisconsin, and the Green Knights (19-3) open Division 4 state tournament play at 7 p.m. this Friday at home against either Milwaukee Hope Christian School or Greendale (Wis.) Martin Luther High School.

JAYSON TATUM, a sophomore forward at St. Louis Chaminade College Prep School, and the Red Devils won 63-56 at Kirkwood (Mo.) Vianney High School on Friday night, with Tatum scoring 23 points. Tatum had 25 points, 12 rebounds, eight assists and five blocks during Chaminade's 85-63 home win last Tuesday night against St. Louis Hazlewood East High School. Tatum, who has offers from Illinois, Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, Marquette, Missouri and St. Louis, and the Red Devils (21-2) are scheduled play at St. Louis Mary Institute and Country Day School at 6 p.m. this Tuesday before ending the regular season at 6 p.m. this Thursday at St. Louis Jennings High School.

JEREMIAH TILMON, a freshman forward at East St. Louis (Ill.) High School, and the Flyers won 61-53 at O'Fallon (Ill.) High School on Friday night. Tilmon, who has interest from Illinois, Indiana, Missouri and St. Louis, among others, and the Flyers (15-7) are scheduled to play at Granite City (Ill.) High School at 7:30 p.m. this Tuesday before ending the regular season at 7:30 p.m. this Friday at home against Collinsville (Ill.) High School.

ELIJAH THOMAS, a junior power forward from Lancaster (Texas) High School, and the Tigers opened the Class 4A postseason with two victories. Thomas had 18 points, 14 rebounds and four assists during Lancaster's 70-54 win last Friday against Wylie (Texas) High School, which came after Lancaster beat Jacksonville (Texas) High School 88-63 last Tuesday night. Thomas had 20 points, 11 rebounds and four assists in that win. Thomas, who has offers from Illinois, Alabama, Arizona, Baylor, Florida, Georgetown, Indiana, Louisville, LSU, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oregon, SMU, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, UNLV and USC, and the Tigers (29-4) are slated to play Whitehouse (Texas) High School tonight in a Class 4A regional semifinal game.

JOSEPH TOYE, a junior forward at La Lumiere School in La Porte, Ind., and the Lakers won three games at its own Laker Invitational recently. The Lakers beat St. Louis Christian 75-67 on Saturday, with Toye contributing 14 points. Toye had four points for the Lakers in a 68-42 win on Friday against Athlete Institute out of Ontario, which came after La Lumiere opened the tournament with a 79-72 win against 22-Foot Academy out of Greenville, S.C., on Thursday. Toye, who has offers from Auburn, Bradley, Creighton, Illinois-Chicago, Iowa, Memphis, Missouri, Providence and Vanderbilt, along with interest from Illinois, Indiana and Michigan State, and the Lakers are now 21-2.

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