Jack Tosh Holiday Tournament Preview!!!!!
The first of my Holiday tournament previews in Chicago Area. The 42nd annual event might be it's best ever. To me this one is the best in the Area. Six ranked teams led by the #1 team in the Area but will be tough for them to win this tournament. Five games in five days the winner will have earned it.
Favorite in top bracket: Glenbard West(Glen Ellyn)- Number 1 ranked team in the area and the state. Senior Gonzaga commit Braden Huff leads an all senior starting lineup with three other division one signees. The glue guy on the team Paxton Warden might be most valuable. They play a six man rotation and the 1-3-1 zone that goes between 6'5" to 6'11". Possible second round matchup with St Patrick(Chicago) could be testy. They have a minefield in the top bracket just to get to the title game. 11th ranked Leo(Chicago) could be waiting in quarterfinals, then #15 Rolling Meadows, #22 Lake Forest or #23 Palatine could be waiting in semifinals.
Favorite in bottom bracket: Bolingbrook- Number 9 ranked team would be the second favorite with junior point guard Mekhi Cooper along with senior forward Michael Osei-Bonsu ruling the boards. Junior forward Donoven Younger helping out on the glass. This team plays racehorse basketball on both ends and pressures your guards. Bolingbrook vs Glenbard West Final would be an exciting contrast of styles. #14 Riverside Brookfield, St Ignatius(Chicago) and Lyons(LaGrange) could be tough outs in semifinals. They are in the bottom bracket which is not as loaded as the top bracket.
Top dark horse: Rolling Meadows- Ranked 15th they are young but talented with some size and could give Glenbard West(Glen Ellyn) some trouble if they get to the semifinals. Orlando Thomas(6'4") and Cameron Christie(6'6") are tall guards who can see over a defense, penetrate, and shoot threes at a high clip. Foster Ogbonna(6'6" junior) is a workhorse rebounder on both backboards. Mark Nikolitch-Wilson(6'5" junior) is another who does work inside in the post and on the boards.
Conclusion: I think Leo(Chicago) does not have enough size to give Glenbard West issues, Rolling Meadows is too young, Lake Forest and Palatine do not have enough deep talent. That would leave Bolingbrook whom they would meet in the title game. I see that being the title game and The Brook would have to speed up the game, which they can do. I'm to sure they have quite enough outside shooting to beat the Hilltoppers. I have Glenbard West winning the tournament as they have been tested before this tournament. They also have to get though the tougher bracket which could wear them out. I say the senior laden team will fight through it as Bolingbrook has a lot of juniors as their top players. Glenbard West will win the Jack Tosh Holiday Tournament, stay #1 and stay undefeated. This will be a big feather in their cap winning the toughest holiday tournament in the area, by top teams and five games in five days marathon.
Top players seniors unless noted:
Braden Huff, Glenbard West(Glen Ellyn)
Caden Pierce, Glenbard West(Glen Ellyn)
Bobby Durkin, Glenbard West(Glen Ellyn)
Ryan Renfro, Glenbard West(Glen Ellyn)
Michael Osei-Bonsu, Bolingbrook
Mekhi Cooper, Bolingbrook, junior
Donoven Younger, Bolingbrook, junior
Orlando Thomas, Rolling Meadows
Cameron Christie, Rolling Meadows, junior
Ian Militec, Rolling Meadows, freshman
Asa Thomas, Lake Forest, junior
Alex Forowyzk, Lake Forest
Tyler Smith, Leo(Chicago), junior
Cameron Cleveland, Leo(Chicago)
Jarrod Gee Jr, Leo(Chicago), junior
Ben VanderWal, Timothy Christian(Elmhurst)
Nojus Industraitis, Lemont, sophomore
TJ Griffin Jr, Stagg(Palos Heights)
Kolby Gilles, St Ignatius(Chicago)
Richard Barron, St Ignatius(Chicago)
Tavari Johnson, Lyons Township(LaGrange)
Joe Gillhooley, Riverside Brookfield
Joevonn McCottry, Riverside Brookfield
Donovan Jones, Solorio(Chicago)
Timaris Brown, St Patrick(Chicago)
EJ Breland, St Patrick(Chicago), freshman
Ricky Hill Jr, Minooka
Trevor Rudak, Minooka