After picking up two victories apiece, the Lyons Township boys basketball team and Fenwick squared off for the LT Tournament championship. The host Lions prevailed with an impressive 64-44 win over the Friars on Saturday night.

Illinois State-bound Nick Zeisloft scored a game-high 20 points and fellow senior guard Spencer Mahoney stuffed the stat sheet with 15 points, eight assists, seven rebounds and six steals to pace the Lions’ balanced attack. Peter Haefner (14 points) and John Malone (9 points) led the Friars.

Fenwick took an early 8-6 lead before LT reeled off 12 unanswered points courtesy of a trio of three-pointers from Zeisloft and a buzzer-beating trey from Mark Sewall. The barrage put the Lions up 18-8 at the end of the first quarter. The Lions extended their lead to 26-10 midway through the second quarter before Fenwick responded with a five-point play. Haefner sank a three-point shot and Malone canned a pair of free throws on the same possession, courtesy of an LT foul on a screen.

The Lions maintained a comfortable lead throughout the second half, while Fenwick struggled offensively, particularly from the charity stripe. The team made just 11 of 23 attempts. The Friars’ customary leading scorers, Dylan Barnett and Tyler Sewall, were held to seven points collectively.

“In general, I thought we played pretty good defense during the tournament,” Fenwick coach John Quinn said. “We were missing some players who played in the Prep Bowl, so our depth particularly on the frontline will improve when those guys are back.”

With LT leading 62-37, the Friars finished the last three minutes of play on a 7-2 spurt to make it a 64-44 final.

“I expected the type of game we got against Fenwick,” LT coach Tom Sloan said. “They have some big, strong kids who really compete and battle. I was pleased with how we kept [Dylan] Barnett under control by not allowing him to get into the paint.”

Nick Burt (8 points, 7 rebounds), Henry Wilson (8 points, 6 rebounds) and Eric Powers (8 points, 3 assists) also contributed for LT.

Tourney runner-up Fenwick (2-1) also claimed a pair of solid wins, including a 41-31 victory over Argo and a 71-41 win over Chicago Academy. Barnett had 18 points, six assists and five rebounds and Sewall chipped in 10 points against Argo. Led by John Planek (13 points), four seniors scored in double figures against Chicago Academy. Tim Gancer and Barnett tallied 12 points each, while Sewall contributed 10 points.

“Like any [season-opening] tournament, I thought we did some good things and bad things,” Quinn said. “We started five seniors, but Dylan and Tyler are the only returning starters. We rushed some shots against LT and could have done a better job executing our game plan.”

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Marty Farmer

The Illinois Press Association recently honored Marty with the 1st & 2nd Place Awards for Best Sports Feature for his article He's in an Oak Park state of mind: Former OPRF star Iman Shumpert returns...