OPRF takes VandeMerkt tourney title

MVP Enoch and Hoehne power undefeated Huskies to victory

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Fresh off 24 wins, a conference title and a strong post-season run last season, the Oak Park and River Forest High School boys basketball team returns this year as a highly-ranked squad in most polls.

OPRF did nothing to dispel that lofty status over Thanksgiving weekend. Instead, the Huskies augmented their argument as an elite team with four relatively comfortable wins en route to the Bill VandeMerkt Thanksgiving Classic title at Riverside-Brookfield High School.

Junior guard Dashon Enoch earned the Most Valuable Player award. Enoch averaged 16.3 points, 4.5 assists and 2.3 rebounds in four games. He also made 10 of 18 three-point shots (56 percent) and 21 of 46 field goal attempts overall.

Teammate Charlie Hoehne joined Enoch on the all-tournament team, which also included Ryan Cicenas (Riverside-Brookfield), Stephon Jordan (Morton), Vashawn Sims (Rich East), Josh Sorenson (Wheaton North) and Ramone Woods (Rich East).

The Huskies' depth was on display at the tournament, as several players contributed toward the championship. Isaiah Fuller, Chase Robinson, Anthony Roberts, Sid Allgood, Phil Saleh and Malachi Ross all played roles for OPRF.

The Huskies won the VandeMerkt tourney title for the second straight season and third time in five years. Since the tournament began in 2003, host RBHS has claimed the most championships with six.

This year, however, it was all Huskies. OPRF defeated Wheaton North, Rich East, Morton and Riverside-Brookfield by an average of 19 points per game.

"I'd like to congratulate Coach [Matt] Maloney and OPRF on winning the tournament," RBHS coach Mike Reingruber said. "They are a very talented and versatile team with a lot of players who impact the game. We talked about trying to limit their spurts, but they had a couple of 14-4, 10-0 type runs that made the difference against us."

OPRF girls basketball

The Huskies won three of four games to finish in third place at the Hinsdale South Tournament. Ahsha Spencer and Amaya Coleman made the all-tournament team for OPRF.

Spencer led OPRF in scoring in three games, highlighted by a 22-point performance in a 77-66 win over Neuqua Valley. Spencer also scored a career-high 23 points in a 67-63 loss to tourney champion St. Ignatius. She averaged 18.2 points per game in the tournament.

The Huskies' Darse Sanchez also scored a career-high 24 points in the loss against the Wolfpack.

Maeve Nelson and Katie Sisler played well for OPRF.

Nelson, a versatile senior known for her excellent defense, had 10 points, nine rebounds and five assists against Neuqua Valley. Sisler contributed 10 points and four steals in the Huskies' 57-42 win against Hinsdale Central.

"This is a good start for us," OPRF coach J.P. Coughlin said. "A lot of players contributed to our success at Hinsdale South. We're looking forward to some big games coming up against Hinsdale Central and Fenwick."

The Huskies (3-1) host crosstown rival Fenwick on Thursday, Nov. 30. Tip-off is 7:30 p.m.

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