ADDISON – It was back to normal for York’s boys basketball team Tuesday.
After three consecutive losses, more than the Dukes had the entire season before the start of the slump, York got back to its winning ways with a 63-55 win over North Lawndale in a regional semifinal at Addison Trail.
York (24-5) trailed 5-2 early and never again, leading by as many as 15 and holding on down the stretch. Next is a regional final Friday against Lyons Township tonight. The top-seeded Dukes were pushed by the No. 17 Phoenix, but the seeding may have been a bit deceptive.
“North Lawndale is a very good team,” York coach Vince Doran said. “They’re no 17 seed.”
The 13-13 Phoenix play in the Chicago Public League Red West with powerhouse teams Young and Orr. Going 4-6 in that league is no shame.
“When I looked at who we might wind up with the first thing on my mind is I don’t want to play North Lawndale, and of course that’s how it played out,” Doran said.
Regardless, the Dukes still had enough in the tank on the night to dispatch the Phoenix. Charlie Rose scored 17 points and fellow seniors Frank Toohey (12 points) and Jack Heinle (10 points) also scored in double figures.
York led 13-10 after the first quarter and gradually extended the lead, going up 10 at halftime and holding the lead at eight or more the rest of the game.
“[After] three [losses] in a row, to come back like that was really nice,” Rose said. “We were waiting almost a week just to play, so it felt good.”
Now the Dukes’ attention has turned to Lyons Township. The Lions defeated Hoffman Estates 71-70 in their regional semifinal on Wednesday. Harrison Niego made a layup at the buzzer to send the Lions to the regional title game.
York beat LT three times during the regular season, twice in West Suburban Silver games and also in a Jack Tosh Holiday Classic semifinal. The Dukes won the first two games at home, 66-60 on Dec. 13 and then 61-47 in the Tosh on Dec. 30. York escaped La Grange with a 70-62 overtime win that required a last minute comeback in regulation on Feb. 1.
“It’s nice to beat our conference rival four times,” Rose said. “Hopefully we can do that.”