A tough early draw against West Aurora put the OPRF boys basketball team in a hole quickly at the 80th Annual Pontiac Holiday Tournament. The Huskies (6-4) weren’t able to recover from the 43-41 loss, and were sent packing after a 73-57 loss to Schaumburg in the second round.

Against West Aurora, a highly-regarded team led by Juwan Starks, OPRF managed a 19-17 advantage by halftime. But in the third period the lead got away from the Huskies as West Aurora outscored them 15-8. Starks, who finished with 14 points in the game, scored on three-straight possessions in the period.

OPRF shot just 31 percent from the field in the game.

“While we played great defensively, we struggled offensively late and that was the difference maker,” said OPRF head coach Matt Maloney. “We’re a young team, so it’s a learning process for these guys right now. They need the experience and they’re getting it. I foresee good things in the near and distant future for this team.”

OPRF had three players score in double digits in its second round game against Schaumburg, but the only problem was the Saxons had four players score in double digits.

Steve Ramsey led OPRF with 16 points, while Ka’Darryl Bell added 13 and Gabe Levin 10. But the Saxons, who took a 27-21 lead by halftime, were fueled by Javon McDonald’s 22 points. McDonald made 6-of-6 three-point attempts in the game, while the team connected on 12-of-16. Schaumburg also received scoring production from Christian Spandiary (14 points), Kyle Bolger (10 points) and Jimmy Lundquist (10 points).

The Huskies jump back into West Suburban (Silver) Conference play this week when they travel to Proviso West on Friday (6 p.m.). Both OPRF and the Panthers are 2-0 in the conference.

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Brad Spencer

Brad Spencer has been covering sports in and around Oak Park for more than a decade, which means the young athletes he once covered in high school are now out of college and at home living with their parents...