By Marty Farmer
The Riverside-Brookfield High School boys basketball team opened Metro Suburban Conference play by splitting a pair of games.
RBHS defeated Illiana Christian 57-38 on Friday. Senior guard Ryan Cicenas had a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds, plus seven assists and a good defensive effort against Illiana's top player, Colin Flipse (5 points). Zach Vaia (15 points, 5 assists), Andrew Veon (10 points, 5 rebounds) and Patrick Hanley (16 points, four 3-pointers) also played key roles for the Bulldogs.
"We played excellent defense against Illiana," RBHS coach Mike Reingruber said. "We are really banged up with injuries and had some illness on Friday, but everyone stepped up and contributed. It was a total team effort."
Earlier last week, the Bulldogs lost to Immaculate Conception 62-56 in Elmhurst. Vaia scored 17 points and Jason Bageanis added 14 points for the Bulldogs. Veon had six rebounds and Hanley four assists.
RBHS (2-5, 1-1) hosts Aurora Central Catholic on Friday, Dec. 15 at 7 p.m.
"Hopefully, we turned a corner this past Friday against Illiana," Reingruber said. "There is such a fine line in winning and losing. Rebounding is a constant focus and something we need to continue to improve on if we want to have a successful season."
Fenwick boys basketball
DJ Steward scored 26 points, dished out six assists and hauled down six rebounds to spark the Friars past host Peoria Manual 61-45 on Saturday. Steward, regarded as one of the top sophomores in the country, set the tone early by scoring nine of the Friars' first 11 points. Fenwick lead 11-5 at the end of the first quarter and 32-14 at halftime en route to a comfortable victory.
Sam Daniels had 10 points and Solomon Oraegbu contributed eight points for the victors.
RBHS girls basketball
Brenna Loftus scored a game-high 21 points and pulled down seven rebounds as the Bulldogs cruised to a 54-29 win at Immaculate Conception. Ashley Rivera also played well, finishing with nine points, eight assists, six rebounds and two steals.
Sarah JnoBaptiste (8 points, 5 steals), Maddie Meehan (6 points, 3 steals) and Natalie Leon (4 points, 7 rebounds) also contributed. The Bulldogs (8-1) had 21 steals and scored 25 points off turnovers.
Fenwick girls basketball
After a 2-6 start this season, the Friars have rebounded nicely with a four-game winning streak. Highlights include two wins (Aurora Central Catholic, Thornton) on Saturday at the Marian Catholic Holiday Tournament and a hard-fought 55-45 victory against St. Ignatius on Dec. 7.
In the latter matchup, McKenzie Blaze scored 20 points to power the Friars past the Wolfpack. Kate Moore (15 points) and Lily Reardon (10 points) provided offensive support.
RBHS boys swimming
The Bulldogs are off to a fast start this season with a runner-up finish at the Maine East Relays and a dual-meet win over Homewood-Flossmoor.
Nolan Dowling, Matt Harder, Peter Baartman and Matt Towner have performed well for RBHS, which hosts Oak Park and River Forest High School and then travels to the Downers Grove South Invite this week.