Jabari Parker dealt with foul trouble throughout the first half of the game but scored nine of his 13 points in the second half as Simeon won their first Chicago City title since 2007. The Wolverines held off a late surge by Curie to hang on for the 53-49 win.
Curie outscored Simeon 25-15 in the fourth quarter to almost erase a 14-point deficit. Devin Foster led the Condors with 19 points, including a banked 3-pointer with 10 seconds left that cut the lead to 2.
Foster was the lone offensive threat for Curie as he continually found himself in good scoring positions. He moves well off the ball and probably only forced one or two shots the entire game.
With Parker saddled with two fouls early on, the offensive burden for Simeon shifted to Kendrick Nunn and Steve Taylor. Both players responded admirably, scoring 15 and 11 points respectively.
Nunn and Taylor also combined to grab 12 rebounds, making up for Parker’s presence on the glass. Taylor was also had two assists and two steals.
Nunn was efficient, which is something he will need to be as he goes forward. He shot 5-for-9 from the field and connected on 2-of-4 three point shots.
Curie forward Cliff Alexander struggled inside with Taylor all game and managed just three points and three rebounds, scoring just once from the field. His ability was evident in spurts but it is clear he still has room to grow on the inside.
Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo was in attendance to watch Parker.
My one takeaway from this game is definitely Devin Foster. How this young man does not have a single scholarship offer is beyond me.
At times he seemed like the best player on the court and his effort off the ball impressed me. At 6-foot-3 he has good size for a mid-major shooting guard and his lefty stroke is pure.
He is also tireless and fearless. He worked hard off the ball and looked to attack from places you typically do not see guards attack from (i.e. the elbow) and was fearless on drives and had no problem taking the contested three that closed the gap at the end.
At the very least I would like to see him end up at a Prep school for a 5th year. It has done nothing but help other players looking for that one extra year to be seen.