Sports Extras
Shumpert, Turner revisit old playing days in NCAA tourney

They once shared the court at Emerson Junior High in Oak Park, but on Sunday Iman Shumpert and Evan Turner shared another court, this one on a national stage in the second round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Both Shumpert and Turner played on the same Emerson basketball team as seventh and eighth graders. Turner, who eventually moved from the Oak Park area, elected to go to St. Joseph High School in Western Springs, while Shumpert starred at OPRF.

When the two met back up at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee on Sunday, it was Turner leading his Ohio State team to a 75-66 victory over Shumpert’s Georgia Tech squad.

Turner finished with 24 points, nine rebounds, nine assists and three steals. Shumpert, now a sophomore with the Yellow Jackets, finished with seven points, eight rebounds, five assists and four steals.

TOPS swims to top finishes

The Oak Park Swimmers (TOPS) of the West Cook YMCA advanced a best-ever 46 swimmers to the Illinois/Missouri YMCA championships after finishing favorably at the Town and Country District Championships.

Individual event winners for the girls included Gillian Lundgren, Hanna Blankemeier, Ellie Kennedy-Wood, Alana Dassoff and Chloe Guhlstorf.

The boys’ winners included Nate Baxter, Nikita Bondarenko, Christopher Brandt, Kyle Patnode, Ivan Stechyshyn, Eric Bell, Eric Hallman and Garrison Johnson.

Smith earns post-season honor

Concordia University Chicago’s Marché Smith, who hails from Oak Park, has earned a third straight post-season honor. The 5-foot-7 junior guard named to the second-team Women’s All-Central Region. Smith was the organization’s Central Region Rookie of the Year in 2008 and a first-team All-Central Region player in 2009.

The Trinity High School-graduate led the Northern Athletics Conference in scoring and ranked 26th nationally in Division III with a 19.2 scoring average. Her 479 points came close to matching last year’s Concordia single-season scoring record of 502.

Smith also led the team in rebounds (203) and steals (69), and Cougar head coach Joshua Steffen noted another category in which Smith led not only the team but the conference.

“Marché’s three-point percentage of .351 (39-111) was exceptional,” Steffen said. “Previously, that was not one of the stronger aspects of her game, but she developed it over the off-season to the point where it did become an important part of her game.

“Above all, Marché puts the team’s success ahead of her own. She doesn’t care so much about the individual awards if the team is doing well, and that was borne out with our five-game improvement this season.”

The Cougars finished 13-12 this year for their second winning season in the past decade.

Local race on the way

The Oak Park Runners Club will hold the 29th running of The Race That’s Good for Life on Sunday, April 11. The 5K run costs $20 for CARA members and $23 for non-CARA members. The youth mile and Eastlake Chiropractic and Healthcare Center 5K fitness walk costs $13. The women’s 5K begins at 9 a.m. and the men’s at 9:50 a.m. The race will also feature a mother/daughter team 5K run competition and a father/son team 5K competition, as well as up to $1,500 in prize money.

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