OPRF boys basketball seniors earn praise from coach

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By Brad Spencer

Sports Editor

Seniors on the OPRF boys basketball team were honored before the Huskies' game against Glenbard West on Saturday, and head coach Matt Maloney played all his veterans in the first quarter. The Huskies (15-8) went on to edge the Hilltoppers 47-44. Junior Erick Locke led the Huskies with 14 points and senior Jakari Cammon added 13.  

"Our seniors were one of the main reasons we won conference last year and have won 15 games to this point this season," said Maloney following the win. "We have so many loyal and selfless players that get the team ready for action each week."

Maloney had something to say about each senior.

Alex Gustafson

"He's one of the hardest workers and smartest players I have ever coached. He has raised the bar for preparation for the younger guys both on and off the floor."

Jakari Cammon

"He has clearly shown that players can have successful careers in two sports. In the era of specialization, Jakari has helped prove to others that one can have a major impact in more than their money sport."

Thomas Ross

"When Thomas was a sophomore we asked him if he wanted to start on the sophomore or play limited minutes with the varsity and develop his game. He quickly responded by saying he trusted us and just wanted to improve as a player and help the program. This clearly demonstrates his selfless nature."

TK Mattox

"He has been instrumental in our success the last two years. He has improved immensely both on and off the floor, including making the honor roll this year."

Jake McCarthy

"He is the heart and soul of our team. He's the vocal leader, the positive voice each day, and our toughest player. He truly exemplifies a true Huskie."

Virgil Allen

"Virg is the most improved player we have. He went from not being able to make a layup to flashes of brilliance in games this year."

Dan Moon

"Even though Dan was injured this season, he has been one of the most positive and influential voices in practice. He comes to practice every day, rehabs his knee and then inspires players with his dedication."

Darrius Williams

"Darrius is our team comedian. He always finds a way to loosen the practice environment and is one heck of a player and athlete."

Matt Van Liedekerke

"Matt, or Vandy as he's known, is our most celebrated academic. Vandy is in line to earn the Scholarship Cup and attend a school in or similar to the Ivy League."

Dylan Venerus

"Dylan is one of our hardest workers who tirelessly prepares our team for action each week. He performs a role that is often overlooked by those outside of the gym, but for those of us inside, we know how important his contributions are to our success."

Darion Tate

"Darion is one of our top student athletes who prepare our big men each day for the war in the paint. He too demonstrates how important our players that prepare us are for our current success."

Kejuan Saulsberry

"Kejuan is a high energy player that also plays a major role in preparing our team for the labors on the court throughout the week."

Brian Loftus

"Brian, or B-Lo as he's known by teammates and coaches, is the hardest worker, along with Jake, in the gym. He has his own patented moves in the paint and only cares about preparing others for battle. He's the definition of a true selfless and loyal teammate."

Isaiah Watson

"Isaiah moved to Oak Park this year, but has contributed immensely in his short time here. He often plays the best player for our opponent in practice each week and does so with enthusiasm and impressive skill."

Email: bspencer@oakpark.com Twitter: OakParkSports

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