Boys Basketball Steps Up To The Pressure


Fares Marzouk, Staff Writer

Despite being a team of upperclassmen who almost all top 6’0”, the OLCHS boys basketball team has big shoes to fill. The previous season’s starting 5 graduated last year after an illustrious season filled with conference upsets and records broken. The school’s all-time leading scorer Sami Osmani is playing Division 1 basketball at a Big East Conference school, Creighton University. Trey Ward also broke into the school’s top 5 highest scorers last season and is now playing for Saint Xavier University. 


Despite having to restructure the squad over an abbreviated postseason, the team remains optimistic and headset on a strong performance this 2021 season. 

“It’s hard to match the success of the best team OL has had in 30 years, but I think we could sneak up on some teams,” shared head coach Jason Rhodes. 


The Spartans maintain some experience and leadership through Seniors Rodney Washington and Ryan Kennelly and Juniors John McGowan and Nicco Reyes. All four showcased moments of individual brilliance within their substantial playing time last season and that talent has only had more time to cultivate over the preseason. “The school and the athletic department has been terrific in allowing us in the gym to work with players in whatever way we were safely allowed, both last summer and in the fall,” shared coach Rhodes. “It’s been full speed ahead here in Oak Lawn”.


The rest of the starting 5 is rounded off by Seniors Hussam Sharfi and Chris Jones, who made massive strides in their game since last year. Junior Davion Lawrence is 6’5” and a defensive powerhouse. Another Junior Gavin Butler transferred from Simeon last year and is expected to contribute heavily to the Spartans defense alongside Lawrence. 


The Spartans currently have 7 wins and 2 losses this season, with 7 dubs and only 1 defeat in the SSC Red conference. Led by their experienced players and supported by their upcoming talents, the Spartans are expected to carry on their early excellence, especially within their conference. “Considering everything since last March, we are blessed to be able to have the opportunity to play again, in whatever form, and will try to take full advantage,” shared coach Rhodes. “Let’s have some fun”.