Now through the tenth week of the season, here are the ten players of the week.
Ben VanderWal (6’7 SF, Timothy Christian 2022)
It seems like VanderWal has explosive outputs every week. He started this week with a 33 point performance where he grabbed 14 boards in an impressive fashion. Then he had 30 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and four steals later in the week. VanderWal has been terrific as the focal point for Timothy Christian.
Collin Wainscott (6’0 PG, Marmion 2023)
What a week for Marmion’s creative point guard. He scored 34 and 28 in wins during a week where the Cadets had some tight games. Wainscott has some traits that you normally don’t see for high school guards. His understanding of angles and how to shield off defenders is advanced. He should be an All-CCL player.
Danny Stephens (6’7 SF, Augusta Southeastern 2023)
Stephens has missed some time with an injury, but put on a 42 point show like he was in mid-season form. He still seems like one of the best kept secrets in the state despite having multiple D1 offers and showing consistent production. Stephens should put up some crazy numbers over these next few weeks if he’s healthy.
Eli Aldana (6’0 PG, Saint Viator)
Viator leaned on the leadership of Aldana over the last few days. Aldana went for 27 points and followed that up with a huge 30-point game. He’s known as a skilled ball-handler and is finding his scoring groove at the perfect time.
Jaden Schutt (6’6 SG, Yorkville Christian 2022)
Yorkville Christian has faced the gauntlet with their tough schedule, but got a massive win over a loaded Kenwood team behind Schutt’s 33-point game. It didn’t look like there was an answer for his shot-making and athleticism. The Mustangs probably fed off of his aggressiveness. Schutt is going to be giving some 1A teams nightmares in a few weeks.
Mike Vuckovic (6’0 PG, Hoffman Estates 2022)
Vuckovic is spearheading a tremendous season for Hoffman. He had two 26-point games and an 18-point game. Their signature win came against Fremd. Vuckovic has been great.
Mikell Jones (6’4 SF, Michelle Clark 2022)
Jones carried Clark in a dominant 25 point, 18 rebound, five assist game. He’s a load when he wants to get to the paint and has the ability to bully opponents. Jones has Clark ready to be a tough out in the city and state playoffs.
Owen Freeman (6’10 C, Bradley Bourbonnais 2023)
Double-doubles are the expectation for Freeman at this point. He doesn’t waste any of his natural ability. This week he had a 32 point game where he pulled in 14 rebounds. In a triple overtime win, he had 16 points and 13 boards.
Tommie Aberle (6’2 SG, Lake Forest 2024)
Aberle is a do-it-all piece to the Scouts and he played that role to perfection this week. He compiled a triple-double with 12 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists then had a double-double where he had 16 points, 10 rebounds, and four assists. Aberle is a versatile athlete that makes winning plays.
Ty Rodgers (6’7 SF, Thornton 2022)
We are lucky to have Rodgers as part of Illinois high school basketball for this year. He has the ability to completely dominate games with his scoring, rebounding, passing, or defense. Usually choosing the latter three, he had 17 points, 16 rebounds, and 10 assists. Against a very tenacious Larkin squad, he had 10 points, eight rebounds, and nine assists. The consistent two-way impact is better than any player in the state.