Sobkowicz continues to excel as Meadows dumps Barrington

By Bill McLean
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 2/20/2021 10:22 PM

Rolling Meadows' best pass catcher in football, senior Daniel Sobkowicz, received accolades for accomplishing a first in his basketball career Saturday night.

The 6-foot-2 "Sobko" threw down a fourth-quarter dunk -- after his steal -- in Meadows' 72-51 defeat of visiting Barrington.


"I stumbled a little," the Mustang admitted after the result of the game between Mid-Suburban League division leaders left MSL East member RM with a 7-0 overall record and MSL West school Barrington with a 5-1 overall mark.

But what the third-year varsity hoopster did in addition to the breakthrough jam -- game-high 5 steals, 5 rebounds and slick passes, including a one-timer ahead of a field goal by reserve Aidan Hosler -- had more of an impact on the outcome.

"Phenomenal athlete," Mustangs coach Kevin Katovich said of Sobkowicz, who scored 8 points, including a pair of 3-pointers in the first half. "Here's a kid, who's usually banged up from football when he joins us. Not this year, though. He thought COVID helped him a lot, because it gave him more time to shoot in the gym."

And boys basketball, in the 2020-21 academic year, kicked off before football because of COVID.

Another first.

Mustangs superstar guard Max Christie had a library-quiet first half (6 points) Saturday, but the final 2 were thunderous. The 6-7 senior dynamo slammed a putback dunk to cut Barrington's lead to 26-25 at the 3:07 mark of the second quarter. That emphatic moment started a 10-1 run at the end of the half.

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The hosts kept rolling after the break, pouring in the first 7 points of the third quarter and then 7 more in a row following a 3-pointer from Broncos junior forward Will Grudzinski (15 points), who did an admirable job defending Christie in the first half; Christie ended up with game highs of 21 points and 10 rebounds.

Meadows led 56-42 after three quarters and stretched the advantage to 70-47 on the Sobkowicz dunk. Mustangs junior guard Orlando Thomas tallied 18 points, and sophomore teammate Cameron Christie netted 14, including a trey and a field goal in back-to-back possessions in the third frame.

The 5 points from Max's brother upped Meadows' lead to 45-30.

"That's such a talented team, Rolling Meadows," lauded Broncos coach Bryan Tucker, who, on a night after his club downed Fremd 52-42 in an MSL West clash, received a team-high 17 points from senior forward Damian Zivak and 10 from junior center Nate Boldt. "We did some good things in the first half, stayed competitive.

"But it's hard to sustain that against a team like RM," he added. "I like our group; it's a good one.

The Mustangs were coming off a 74-69 defeat of Hersey in an MSL East showdown Friday night. Max Christie struck for 26 of his 33 points in the second half of that one.

The Michigan State recruit sparkled late, again, Saturday night.

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