By Peter McShane ‘23

After closing out the season with a win against the Bogan Bengals, Brother Rice earned the 2nd seed in their sectional for the IHSA playoffs. Set to play against Eisenhower High School in the first round, the Crusaders knew they needed to take every game seriously.

Senior guard Ahmad Henderson said, ”We all knew we needed to get going quick in this game. Every team we play from now on will give us everything they got. “

The Crusaders did just as Ahmad said. Taking a lead of 41-26 at halftime, the team felt great but knew the job wasn’t done. Khalil Ross led the team with 13 points going into halftime. Nick Niego also hit four 3-pointers going into the half.

Senior forward Khalil Ross said, “We thought we had a great first quarter against them, but we slowly let them creep back into the game in the second quarter. They had one player who was hitting a lot of shots, and we knew if we slowed him down in the second half we’d be all good.”

Brother Rice grew on their lead by ending the fourth quarter up 62-40. With a great team effort, the Crusaders took down Eisenhower High School 72-53. They go on to play against Andrew High School to have a chance to win a Regional Title.

Junior guard Demarcius Royster said, “It’s always good to get the first playoff game out of the way. We know that we’ll run into some very good teams later in the playoffs, but we’re just focused on beating Andrew for now.”