Home / News / Omar Saleh leads Oak Lawn to conference title

Omar Saleh leads Oak Lawn to conference title

Sophomore forward Omer Salih He was listed on Oak Lawn’s junior varsity roster in programs distributed for Tuesday night’s game against Eisenhower.

But Saleh not only played for the team, he took the heroic role in a huge win for the Spartans that secured their third straight South Suburban Red title.

“I decided this was a game where I had to give it my all and give it my all,” Saleh said. “I tried to take my best shots, make my best passes and do my best.

“A wonderful feeling. “I love helping my team win.”

Saleh came off the bench to score 14 points and grab six rebounds to help Oak Lawn win the title with a 62-54 win over the host Cardinals in a winner-takes-all game at Blue Island.

donte montgomery He led the Spartans (21-7, 12-1) with 18 points and 7 rebounds. Jack Dempsey got 10 points, Corey Lee And Henry Martinez added eight points each and kyle brennan He grabbed 10 rebounds.

A.J. Abrams He scored 18 points, 16 of which were in the second half, and contributed 7 rebounds to Eisenhower (23-7, 11-2). Micah Calvin added 13 points Ayipey Salinas There were 11 and Darrion Pippen attended nine.

It’s been a wild ride for Saleh, who often pulled double duty in JV and varsity matches earlier in the season.

“I was in the double squad at the beginning of the season,” Saleh said. “I would play both JV and varsity in non-conference games. In conference matches, I would play as a partner player and then sit on the bench for the team and try to raise the energy as much as I could.

“I would take my reps for the JV and then watch the older players play at a different level. “They have more experience and watching them has helped a lot.”

Eisenhower’s Darrion Pippen (13) blocks his shot by Oak Lawn’s Jack Dempsey (3) and Henry Martinez (32) during the South Suburban Red game at Blue Island on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024. (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)

Saleh began playing full-time collegiately in the new year.

“When Corey (Lee) got injured, he started playing more for us,” the Oak Lawn coach said. Jason Rhodes He mentioned Salih. “He plays very hard. He is a very good rebounder, a good communicator and plays good defense.

“Those were the things we needed. It doesn’t hurt that he can shoot a little.”

Salih showed off his shooting like never before, hitting all six of his shots on Tuesday night. That included a pair of 3-pointers.

“I think his highest performance to this point was like five points,” Rhodes said. “He scored 14 points in a game like this, which is great. He gave us everything we needed.”

Sean Ryan (14) of Oak Lawn passed away Ayipey Salinas (3) of Eisenhower during a basketball game on Tuesday, February 13, 2024 in Blue Island.  (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)
Oak Lawn’s Sean Ryan (14) passes to Eisenhower’s Ayipey Salinas (3) during the South Suburban Red game on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024, at Blue Island. (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)

In a nip-and-tuck affair, each of the first three quarters ended with a two-point lead for Oak Lawn.

The Spartans eventually took control and Saleh provided five key points in the fourth quarter.

“Make an effort,” said Montgomery. “This is what (Saleh) brings. He goes out there and tries to get every rebound. He plays very well in every training, he always works hard no matter what we do.

“This carries over to the games, too.”

Oak Lawn's Omar Saleh (left) and Jack Dempsey (center) chase after a loose ball as Eisenhower's Ola Solomon (right) during a basketball game on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024, in Blue Island.  (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)
Oak Lawn’s Omar Saleh (left) and Jack Dempsey (center) go after a loose ball with Eisenhower’s Ola Solomon during a South Suburban Red game Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024, at Blue Island. (John Smierciak/Daily Southtown)

On top of that, Salih’s self-confidence has increased as the last six weeks have passed.

“I took the good and the bad of the practice,” Saleh said. “I have seen old people make mistakes. I watched them do the amazing things they did. “I took everything into my game and tried to improve my skills as much as I could.”

Entering the 2021-22 season, Oak Lawn had not won a conference championship in 39 years. The Spartans have won three in a row.

“It’s pretty amazing,” Rhodes said. “It took so long to get over the first one and now to do it three times in a row is great, especially this year because I think our (South Suburban Red) side is better than the other side (South Suburban Blue).” .

“It definitely wasn’t easy.”

About yönetici

Check Also

Meet the 2023-24 Aurora-Elgin men’s basketball all-District team

Players from Waubonsie Valley, West Aurora, Oswego East and Class 1A state finalist Aurora Christian …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Watch Dragon ball super