A 3-pointer by a Morton player at the buzzer of last week's regional semifinal game ended one of Riverside-Brookfield's most memorable seasons.
The Bulldogs had taken Morton down to the wire in the LaGrange Regional semifinal when the Mustangs' John Stokes buried a last-second shot from behind the arc to capture a 61-58 Morton victory.
RB took a 19-17 lead in the first period, but Morton was able to even things out, 28-28, by halftime. The Bulldogs struck again in the third, taking a seven point lead into the final period.
The Mustangs, who took on Lyons Township for the regional championship Tuesday night (after deadline), outscored RB by 10 points in the final period.
Stokes led all scorers with 18 points.
The Bulldogs had three players finish in double-digit scoring: Mike Halusek (14 points), Matt Sandrik (11 points), and Alex Devaris (10 points). Six-foot-3-inch freshman Chris Parrish chipped in nine points.
RB closes out the season with an overall record of 15-11, and a Suburban Prairie (East) Conference record of 7-1. The Bulldogs clinched the conference title on Feb. 4 when they thumped Elmwood Park 83-55. The team remained undefeated in the conference?"a span stretching a total of 17 games?"until a heartbreaking 82-78 overtime loss to Fenton in the final game of the regular season.
The Bulldogs will lose the bulk of this year's scoring production to graduation. Halusek, Tyler Kos, Andrew Dzija and Devaris, who scored 28 points or more in the last two games of the regular season, all graduate in June.
Powers that be
Former Riverside-Brookfield standout athlete Shatone Powers has returned to the hardwood.
Powers, who starred on both the RB football and basketball teams during his senior year in 2002, and is currently a starting wide receiver for the Northern Illinois University football team, is now a member of the university's basketball team.
Powers, who helped lead the Huskies to a win in the Silicon Valley Bowl back in January, joined the hoops squad a few weeks ago.
Powers got the nod from NIU head coach Rob Judson to replace Paige Paulsen, who is expected to miss the remainder of the season due to a concussion he suffered against Kent State on Feb. 6.
Powers, who averaged 21 points his varsity season for the Bulldogs, caught four touchdown passes for the Huskies this year.
The former Bulldog was expected to see some playing time this week as NIU began the MAC tournament.