Stevenson (10-0) and St. Joseph (11-1) will meet for the Proviso West Holiday Tournament championship tonight in a true battle of Illinois basketball heavyweights.
The match-ups for this contest are quite enticing with Stevenson rolling out Jalen Brunson (Villanova), Connor Cashaw (Rice) and Matthew Johnson countered by the St. Joseph trio of Glynn Watson (Nebraska), Jordan Ash (Northwestern) and Joffrey Brown.
6'6 super-sophomore Justin Smith makes this happen inside and outside for Stevenson, and he is countered by 6'10 Nick Rakocevic of St. Joseph, who is equally capable of taking apart opponents inside and outside.
Stevenson was impressive in the semifinals beating Chicago Kenwood. St. Joseph avenged their only loss with a convincing win over St. Rita.
The game is set for a 7:30 p.m. tip-off before what will be a packed house at Proviso West.
If Stevenson wins, they will obviously keep their #1-ranking. If St. Joseph wins, they will take the #1-ranking.
Proviso West Holiday Tournament - Saturday Schedule
11:30 a.m. Chicago Phillips vs. Proviso West
1:00 p.m. Hinsdale Central vs. Fenwick (Consolation Final)
2:30 p.m. Maine South vs. Proviso East
4:30 p.m. Rockford Auburn vs. Hillcrest
6:00 p.m. Chicago Kenwood vs. Chicago St. Rita
7:30 p.m. Stevenson vs. St. Joseph
Barrington (11-3) defeated Zion-Benton (8-3) 88-81 in overtime to advance to the title game of the Hinkle Holiday Classic at Jacobs High School. Rapolas Ivanauskas scored a career-high 37 points to power Barrington.
Barrington erased a double-digit halftime deficit behind Ivanauskas in regulation and Chris Lester in overtime.
Ivanauskas scored 23 points in the second half and put his diverse offensive skill package on full display with drives, dunks, screens and triples. His triple with 16 seconds to play cut a four point deficit down to one and set the stage for Barrington sending the game to overtime at the buzzer.
Ivanauskas added 10 rebounds. Lester backed up Ivanauskas with 18 points.
Tennessee-bound Admiral Schofield scored 21 points to lead Zion-Benton before fouling out at the 6:22 mark of the fourth quarter.
Barrington will now face Christian Negron and Elgin Larkin for title tonight.