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Chase Abraham and Thornton take down Evergreen Park

Senior guard who missed three weeks with a midseason foot injury chase ibrahim Thornton watched from the bench as his teammates continued to pile up their wins.

Abraham saw that the Wildcats were good without him but felt they could be even better when he returned.

“I felt like I could add a little more,” Abraham said. “There is a lot of talent in the team.

“Everyone came together when I went down. They were already supported, so when I came back I wanted to pick up where I left off, play my part and do what I had to do.”

Shaking off some rust when he returned, Abraham went back to playing like himself. She scored 12 points on Tuesday night to help the host Wildcats to a 77-47 victory over Evergreen Park in the Class 3A Thornton Regional semifinal in Harvey.

Illinois staff Morez Johnson His 21-point and 17-rebound performance led Thornton (28-4), which will face either Brother Rice (30-3) or Marian Catholic (22-10) in the sectional championship game Friday at 7 p.m.

Isaiah Green Wildcats added 14 points. Meyoh Swansey He collected 13 points and Layshawn Scott He contributed with 6 points and 7 rebounds.

Three Dowdells He finished with 13 points and five rebounds for Evergreen Park (22-11), which completed its historic postseason run by winning the program’s first regional championship in 50 years. Billy Buchanan We added 10 points, Keshaun Vaval there were nine and Nolan Sexton He counted eight.

Abraham, who transferred from TF North before the start of the school year, came out quickly on Tuesday night, scoring seven points in the first quarter.

The Wildcats came out of the gate scoring 16 points in the first four minutes, none from Johnson.

Thornton’s Layshawn Scott (23) pursues a loose ball against Evergreen Park during the Class 3A Thornton Regional semifinals on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Harvey. (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)

“It was great,” Johnson said. “Everyone was ready to play. The other team thought I would receive the ball directly, but it didn’t happen that way.

“We have a lot of weapons on the team and we need to be ready to maximize all those weapons. Teams will not know what will hit them first.”

This is especially true when Abraham is on. He said that although he had some doubts when he first returned from injury, he now feels comfortable.

“You second-guess yourself for not being able to play basketball for that long,” Abraham said. “’If I do this, will I get this?’ you think.

“I wanted to go out there and play with confidence, like I did all season.”

Evergreen Park's Tre Dowdell (left) hits Thornton's Meyoh Swansey (3) during the Class 3A Thornton Regional basketball semifinals on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024.  (John Smierciak for Daily Southtown)
Evergreen Park’s Tre Dowdell (left) hits Thornton’s Meyoh Swansey (3) during the Class 3A Thornton Regional semifinals on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Harvey. (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)

Johnson is certainly pleased to have Abraham back in the squad.

“We need Chase there,” Johnson said. “We were winning games without him, but it was a lot harder.”

Abraham has established himself as a strong three-point shooter with the ability to score off the rush Last season in TF North But Thornton wanted to be more than that.

“Of course I scored a lot of goals last year, but for me it’s not just about scoring goals,” he said. “I’m trying to get everyone involved. I’m trying to make the right reads, make the right passes and be more of a complete guard.

“Everyone knows I can score goals. But not everyone knows I can pass, play defense, make smart plays, attack. Just little things.”

Thornton's Chase Abraham (2) rebounds from Evergreen Park during the Class 3A Thornton Regional basketball semifinals on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024.  (John Smierciak for Daily Southtown)
Thornton’s Chase Abraham (2) rebounds from Evergreen Park during the Class 3A Thornton Regional semifinals on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Harvey. (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)

Thornton coach Tai Streets I have seen Abraham grow and become a versatile player.

“He and Isaiah are sharing point guard duties, and that’s a good thing,” Streets said. “Chase is really developing into a complete player on both ends of the floor.”

Thornton is now part of the Class 3A Sweet 16 and Abraham loves being a Wildcat.

“It was good,” said Ibrahim. “We see a good crowd at almost every game. We play in big games, big tournaments. If you’re a basketball player, that’s what you live for.”

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