2017-18 THE Chicago Hoops Week 15 – (Feb. 18)

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Updated: February 22, 2018

Let the divisional games begin (again) gentlemen! Just 3 weeks of regular season games remain and there is still a lot left to be decided! We get back to divisional play in Week 16 and there are a ton of juicy divisional match-ups coming up this Sunday. But before we get to those, Week 15 provided some fantastic ball games along with a few blowouts. The biggest news of the week was that we no longer have any undefeated teams as Team McNichols fell for the first time this season! Team Harlander continues to win and has not lost a ball game since October 29th and finished non-divisional play undefeated! Amazing accomplishments by both groups!

We are cruising along to the Playoffs and as we just mentioned, there is a TON still left to be decided over the last three regular season weeks. Including who is going to be selected to the 2017-18 All Star Team! Voting will open next week and will only be open for a few weeks. The leading vote getter will become League MVP and he along with the rest of the All Stars will get the chance to participate in the 2017-18 All Sports Series Sunday HOOPS league All-Star Game and 3pt Contest on Championship Sunday! More on that later. Now onto our Week 15 Power Rankings…

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Power Rankings

1. Team McNichols (Chipotle) – South – 14-1

“Say it ain’t so, Joe!” In what had to be the upset of the night, if not year, Team McNichols suffered their first defeat of the 2017-18 season, losing to Team Schwartz 90-77. To win 14 straight ball games is an amazing accomplishment and something these guys should be very proud of. The silver lining here is that at least the pressure of going through an undefeated season is finally off of their shoulders. They can truly concentrate now on what really matters, the Chip! Team McNichols gave Team Schwartz all they could handle but it just wasn’t enough to cool down the hot shooting hands of Team Schwartz. Team McNichols was without their two leading scorers on Sunday night as Mike Kennedy and Joe Kozak missed this game, and it showed, as they posted their lowest scoring total since Week 8. Romeo Magloire on the other hand was present for this game on Sunday night and was lights out dropping 25 points and grabbing 11 boards to help keep these guys in this game. He had the game high. Captain Chris McNichols also did everything he could to try to pull out their 15th straight win, dropping 15 points, but it just wasn’t meant to be on Sunday night. These guys need to let this loss go and continue to do what they have done all season as the next three weeks are so crucial to their title chances. Coming up on Sunday, they get a rematch from Week 1 with #2 Team Harlander in our Week 16 Game of the Week!

 

2. Team Harlander (SLA Insurance) – South – 13-2

Week in and week out Team Harlander has shown why they are one of the top dogs in THE CHI Hoops league. Sunday night they proved that once again as they beat defending champs Team Lalez by a final score of 83-61. The win was their 12th in a row and they concluded non-division play unbeaten, going 12-0! Well done gentleman, well done! Connor Grotton was the star of the game as he produced 25 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists to help cruise past the defending champs. Ademilola Jr. Adekoya also had a big night netting 20 points while Adam Gwardys did his thing once again and dropped 16 points of his own to help his squad secure their 13th straight victory. Now that non-divisional play is over, they really need to buckle down and get some wins in the division over the next three weeks. They’ll get back to the court on Sunday night with a match-up against #1 Team McNichols in our Week 16 Game of the Week! A loss here for Team Harlander and the #1 overall seed is all but out the window as they have already dropped one game to Team Harlander back in Week 1. A win on the other hand gets them into the driver seat for the overall #1 seed. Everything to play for on Sunday night!

 

3. Team Hampton (Crystal Lake CDJ) – South – 12-3

Our Week 15 Game of the Week did not disappoint on Sunday night as we had an instant classic between Team Hampton and Team Hanessian that had to go into O.T. to decide the winner! Team Hampton came back from twelve points down in the final five minutes of the game to defeat Team Hanessian 97-94 in overtime. The big three of Randall Hampton, Bryant Orange and Joshua Davis for Team Hampton led the charge as they combined to score 75 of their team’s 97 points! Randall Hampton was super clutch throughout this game and he finished with a great stat line of 27 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. This win makes it four in a row for Team Hampton and moves them up into the #3 spot in the Week 15 Power Rankings. They get back to divisional play coming up on Sunday with a match-up against Team Max. In their first meeting this season back in Week 1, Team Hampton squeezed out a close one by the final score of 77-71. They’ll hope to repeat that same performance in Week 16 and continue their climb up the standings and Power Rankings.

 

4. Team Hanessian (CEA Study Abroad) – East – 12-3

Lots of foul trouble is what was ultimately Team Hanessian downfall on Sunday night as they lost 97-94 in overtime to #3 Team Hampton in our Week 15 Game of the Week. In a grit and grind kind of game that had to be decided in overtime, Team Hanessian just didn’t have enough in the tank to pull off the victory. This was only their third loss on the season and drops their record to 12-3 heading into divisional play on Sunday afternoon. The loss also drops Team Hanessian to #4 in the Week 15 Power Rankings. Even in the losing effort, Michael Halusek was the star of his team as he had 26 massive points while pulling down 7 rebounds and dishing out 5 assists. The teams leading scorer and the leagues overall third leading scorer, Sterling Williams, also had a nice afternoon dropping 20 points of his own. They’ll look to shake off this tough loss quickly in Week 16 with a divisional match-up against a 5-10 Team Malvin squad that is coming off a nice Week 15 victory. In their previous match-up on opening night back on October 15th, Team Hanessian squeezed out a 1-point victory in the closing seconds of that ball game. Team Malvin will be out for some revenge this Sunday so these guys will need to regroup quickly from this Week 15 loss.

 

5. Team Massie (Theory) – West – 9-6

By the final score of 104-75, Team Massie picked up their 5th consecutive victory on Sunday evening cruising past Team Harris. The win brings their record up to 9-6 and in a three-way tie for 5th place in the overall Standings. With the win, they also move up into the #5 hole in the Week 15 Power Rankings. They’ll get the nod over the other two 9-6 teams, Team Lalez and Team Schwartz, as they are 2-0 against these two crews. The leagues overall leading scorer, Dylan Kremer, was magical once again on Sunday night scoring 40 points while grabbing 6 boards and dishing out 6 assists. Tim Brennen, Jordan Gibson and Captain Brock Massie also combined to score 61 points in this offensive explosion. These guys now head into Week 16 and divisional play with a ton of confidence riding high on their 5-game winning streak. They’ll get a Week 1 rematch with Team Purimetla in Week 16 where they will look to avenge their 20-point loss. A win here for Team Massie and they will all but secure the division crown. A loss on the other hand gives Team Purimetla and Team Maione an opportunity to snatch that coveted division title away from them. Extremely important match-up out in the West!

 

6. Team Schwartz (StudentCity) – East – 9-6

As the old saying goes, anything can happen on any given Sunday. Team Schwartz pulled off the upset of the night, if not the year, by taking down undefeated and #1 Team McNichols by a final score of 90-77. It was a huge bounce back game for these guys from a very tough loss last week to #2 Team Harlander. This was a great group effort as five guys scored in double figures. Kyle Clark led the way as he had a team high 22 points. This massive victory moves these guys up to the #6 spot in the Week 15 Power Rankings. They’ll look to build on this big win in Week 16 when they match-up against divisional foes and defending champs, Team Lalez. Back in their first meeting in Week 1, Team Schwartz got an important win beating Team Lalez by a score of 81-76. Austin Brown had a big night in Week 1 against these guys and they’ll surely need his services once again on Sunday night if they plan on taking the defending champs down for a second time this season.

 

7. Team Lalez (Hakimian Imports) – East – 9-6

Team Lalez took yet another defeat on Sunday evening as they went down 83-61 to #2 Team Harlander. They have now dropped two consecutive games (albeit against the #1 and #2 teams in the league) and three of their last four overall. Not something that these guys are used too. David Gershenzon did all he could to carry his team as he had a great night on the floor with 25 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals. Captain Benny Lalez had his usual night putting up 13 points, however they just could not stop the high flying and scoring offense of Team Harlander. They will look to put an end to this two-game losing streak in Week 16 when they tip off against division rivals, Team Schwartz. In that game back in Week 1, Team Lalez looked a touch rusty in what was banner night for this squad and took the opening night loss falling to Team Schwartz, 81-76. They’ll be out for revenge on Sunday evening as they will look to snap this two-game losing streak and get back into the winner’s circle.

 

8. Team Purimetla (Biaggi’s) – West – 7-8

Team Purimetla played a very good game on Sunday night but came up just a little short, falling to Team Dean by a final score of 102-97 in what turned out to be the highest scoring game of the night. All five of their starters scored in double figures in this one but Team Dean was just a bit too tough and determined. Adam Jones left everything he had out on the court as he led his squad with 27 points while snatching 7 rebounds. Jole Schmal had 20, Jonny Chaikin poured in 19, Kevin Matos added 17 and Max Boton dropped in 14. Unfortunately, they just could not get enough defensive stops down the stretch to secure their 8th victory on the 2017-18 season. They will now need to turn their attention to Team Massie in Week 16 as they get back to divisional play. Back on opening night, Team Purimetla cruised to a 75-55 victory and will be looking for a repeat performance in Week 16. A win will get Team Purimetla back to .500 and within striking distance of Team Massie for the division crown while a loss here will all but eliminate their chances for the Western division title.

 

9. Team Maione (The Bucket List) – West – 7-8

As we mentioned last week, Team Maione has developed some great team chemistry over the last month or so of the season, and it showed once again on Sunday night as they handed Team Reisner a heavy defeat by a final score 100-74. This was their fourth consecutive victory and brings their record back up to 7-8. They were without the services of their leading scorer, Tellef Lundevall in this one, but the three-headed monster of Chris Wroblewski, Dylan Richter and Bradley Deutsch produced 73 points between the three of them. Dylan Richter was a fantasy stat stuffer on Sunday night and came just shy of recording a triple double as he totaled 27 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 blocks and a steal. We can’t forget to give special shout outs to Kevin Stineman and Andy Timson as they both recorded double-doubles in this one to help secure the victory. They will look to make it five straight in Week 16 when they welcome divisional rivals Team James. Back on opening night, Team Maione recorded a comfortable win over Team James by a final score of 80-62. A win in Week 16 will keep them in contention for the Western division crown.

 

10. Team Reisner (Chicago Trolley) – North – 6-9

Team Reisner played a good game on Sunday night but ultimately did not have enough fire power to take town a determined and red-hot Team Maione squad, losing 100-74. The final score does not indicate how hard these guys played against one of the top teams in the league. Hunter Hill was balling out as he had 28 points and 6 boards. Big man Adam Rhum also had a great game posting 21 points and grabbing 9 boards. Captain Jordan Reisner was his consistent self and recorded 13 points of his own. The good news here for Team Reisner is that they still control their own destiny in the North division. They have a one game lead on Team Dean and can lock up the division in Week 17 when those two squads square off against one another. But before we get to Week 17, they cannot overlook their Week 16 opponents, Team Jones. Any kind of slip up here can open the door for the other squads in the North looking to make a run at the division crown. They suffered a crushing defeat back on opening night to Team Jones and will be looking to get some payback for that lopsided loss.

 

11. Team Malvin (Dr. Jacob D.D.S.) – East – 5-10

After suffering a crushing defeat last week to Team Hampton, Team Malvin came out firing against team Max as they defeated them 94-58 on Sunday night. The win moves their record up to 5-10 on the season and as a result, they move into the Top-11 of the Week 15 Power Rankings. Combo guard Rodney Clark wasted no time making his presence felt on Sunday evening as he put up 29 points and 11 rebounds. He also added three steals and a block. The rest of the starting five scored in double figures as well with Nikko dropping 15 points and grabbing 11 boards. Chris Clark added 16 points and Mark Swanson scored 15 to help these guys cruise to an easy Week 15 victory. They return to the court in Week 16 with a divisional match-up against #4 Team Hanessian. Back on opening night, Team Hanessian won on a last second shot that for sure left a sour taste in Team Malvin’s mouths. They’ve had to think about that game for the last four months and this Sunday will be their opportunity to exact some revenge. While they are out of contention for the division crown, Team Malvin can still make some moves in the overall standings and will look to build on their big Week 15 win.

 

Rest of the Pack (Alphabetical Order)

Team Dean (Live Clean CHI) – North – 5-10

This was a game that went down to the wire as Team Dean walked out of FFC on Sunday night with a crucial 102-97 victory over Team Purimetla. The win brings their record up to 5-10. Courtney Griffin was a monster on Sunday as he scored 38 points to go along with 5 rebounds and 4 assists. He had the game high in this one, but it wasn’t all about Courtney as Brandon Williams also had a career night posting 28 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists. Captain and floor general Tredrick Dean stuffed the stat sheet as well with 18 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists and 3 steals. They will now turn their attention to division foes, Team Harris in Week 16. Back in Week 1 on opening night, Team Dean posted a 23-point victory and will be looking to do the same coming up on Sunday. Team Dean is still within striking distance of division Leaders Team Reisner as they are only one game back. They’ll need to take care of business this Sunday before the showdown with Team Reisner in Week 17.

 

Team Harris (Schweitzer Title) – North – 3-12

Dropping their second game in a row, Team Harris lost on Sunday night to Team Massie by the final score of 104-75. The loss drops their record to 3-12 on the 2017-18 campaign. Team Harris has been a staple of THE Chicago Hoops league scene for many years. They have had seasons of being a Top-4 seed but are still searching for that first Crown. A year ago, they fell back a bit in the standings and entered the Playoffs as the #12 seed. Most of that came as a result of having a short-bench for most games. It was much of the same this past weekend in their loss to Team Massie. They just had 5 guys and ran out of steam. Tony Rizzo did have a monster game posting 30 huge points to carry the offensive load. Big man Eric Handrich also had a nice night posting 21 points and 7 boards while Max Unger was able to drop in 16. They can beat anyone in the league with their whole group and will try to rip off a couple of wins to close out the last three divisional games on their remaining schedule. On the sdocket in Week 16 is a rematch from Week 1 as they welcome Team Dean, a team they lost to by 23 points on opening night.

 

Team James (Stanley’s Kitchen) – West – 1-14

In a game that they’ll soon want to forget, Team James took a brutal defeat, falling to Team Jones 107-56. They were without their top three scorers in this one as Dave Altman, Corey Davis and Christian James all had to miss out on this one. Corey Lewis did however bring his A game to the gym on Sunday night, posting a stat line of 20 points and 8 rebounds. Running mate Alonso Taylor had 17 points, 4 rebounds and 3 steals. They will look to get back on track next week when they get back into divisional play and a match-up against Team Maione. Back in Week 1 when these two squads opened up the 2017-18 season, Team Maione pulled away in that one and recorded a 80-62 victory. While the Western division crown is out of the picture for Team James, if they can rack up a couple of wins over the last three weeks, they’ll be able to move up in the standings and improve upon their playoff seeding. Important games down the stretch run here.

 

Team Jones (Rockin’ Refuel) – North – 3-12

Teams Jones has had a brutal schedule the past few weeks and have been searching for answers to end their recent losing streak. Well, Team James happened to find some answers on Sunday night as they dismantled Team James by a final score of 107-56. The team’s Captain, leading scorer and pack leader, Gilles Jones, was once again sensational in this one as he posted 30 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals. Ron Nandi also came out on Sunday night and had one of the best games of his playing career posting a stat line of 32 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals. This is the win they needed to get as they look to gain momentum going into the playoffs, and they did not fail. While their dreams of securing that North crown are all but over, they still have an outside chance of taking down the division if all things work out in their favor. So, you’re telling me there’s a chance?? Yes, Team Jones, you still have a chance. But first things first, they must take down division leaders Team Reisner in Week 16. Back on opening night, Team Jones defeated Team Reisner by 28 points and will look to have a repeat performance coming up on Sunday.

 

Team Max (Southview Athletics) – South – 5-10

Things seem to have gone from bad to worse for Team Max over the last month or so of this season. They dropped their 5th straight game on Sunday night, losing to Team Malvin by a lopsided score of 94-58. Captain Tyler Max had the hot hand and did everything he could to keep his squad in this game, posting 23 points and bringing down 6 rebounds. He chipped in a couple of steals as well. While Team Max division title hopes have been long gone, they can still improve upon their playoff seeding while piling up a couple on wins in the final three weeks of the season. These guys are always competitive with everyone and tend to “play up” to the competition when facing the very best in the League. Back in Week 1, they did just that, sticking with Team Hampton who was in the Championship a year ago. They eventually fell by 6 points and will be out for revenge on Sunday night when these two squads square off for the second time this season.

 

That’s it for Week 15. Good luck to all on Sunday!

-Marko