The Times Illinois Boys Basketball Top 5

2012-01-19T17:30:00Z 2012-12-21T23:29:20Z The Times Illinois Boys Basketball Top 5By Times Staff nwitimes.com
January 19, 2012 5:30 pm  • 

(Last week's ranking in parentheses; games through Wednesday)

1. Bloom Township 15-3 (1)

Were any other Times-ranked team playing lights-out right now, the Blazing Trojans wouldn't be residing in the penthouse this week. Every club stumbles once in a while, but Bloom Township's latest was a doozy -- it blew a nine-point lead in less than two minutes Monday and suffered an OT loss to Sandburg. The Blazing Trojans get a mulligan for that meltdown, but they must bounce back quickly.

2. Crete-Monee 12-4 (2)

The Warriors outlasted Mount Carmel on Monday, but the victory would have meant more had it occurred last winter, when the Tracy Abrams-led Caravan were a force. They're run-of-the-mill this season, so Crete-Monee's six-point margin was actually surprising in a somewhat negative sense. It was still a win, but the Warriors have raised the bar pretty high for themselves the past few years.

3. Seton Academy 15-3 (3)

Orr spanked the Sting on Sunday, proving again that Seton is fallible. Of course, try telling that to the schools sharing a Class 2A residence with the Sting. It's been said before, but it bears repeating: Losses against teams in 3A and 4A won't harm -- and could ultimately help -- Seton over the long haul. Next week provides two more stiff tests, with Marist and Brother Rice on the docket.

4. Homewood-Flossmoor 12-4 (4)

Seeing as how Sandburg defeated Bloom Township on Monday, the Vikings' SWSC Blue victory over the Eagles last Friday suddenly looks praiseworthy. H-F was no offensive juggernaut in that contest, but it didn't need to be, thanks to a defense that held Sandburg to 36 points. A road win at Rockford Boylan on Saturday completed a strong weekend for the Vikings.

5. Thornwood 11-5 (5)

The Thunderbirds had their hands full with Stagg last Friday but prevailed in OT on the road. Thornwood has already stood toe-to-toe with three of the four teams positioned in front of it in this poll, and T'birds coach Paul Slavich hopes those experiences pay dividends tonight against unbeaten Andrew. Success in that game should make Thornwood the SWSC Red favorite.

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