By Drake Skleba
For the Bugle 

Maine South boys avenge 2019-20 Regional Final loss at Loyola


Last updated 2/6/2021 at 1pm

Three hundred and thirty-seven days ago, on March 6, 2020, the Loyola Ramblers ended the Maine South Hawks' season with a 47-25 win in the IHSA Loyola Class 4A Regional Championship Game.

On Friday night, the 2021 Hawks (1-0) avenged their regional final loss at Loyola behind senior Sean Gallery to defeat the host Ramblers 47-36. Gallery scored 11 of his game high 18 points in the 22-point Hawk third quarter as the Hawks erased a 19-18 halftime deficit to open up a 40-28 lead after three quarters and never looked back.

Trailing 19-18 with 4:20 remaining in the third quarter, Maine South seniors Milan Adamovic and Nikola Zelenovic (10 points, two 3's) buried a pair of three-point shots to put the Hawks ahead 24-19.

After Maine South's 6-foot, 6-inch senior Marko Anderson picked up foul No. 4, Gallery took over the game leading the Hawks to the 40-28 cushion.

"Whenever Marko (Anderson) gets in foul trouble it is my job to step up," Gallery said. "We all made halftime adjustments and were able to take over the game."

Anderson was on the bench for most of the game with foul trouble and yet still scored six points and hauled down nine rebounds.

With six minutes remaining in the game Loyola (0-1) had pulled to within 40-31 when Zelenovic buried his second three-point dagger to finish off the Ramblers.

"Loyola has beaten us the last three years and it felt good to beat them here tonight," Zelenovic said. "Everybody contributed tonight for a great team win."

On Saturday the Hawks will open up Central Suburban League play with a CSL crossover game with Deerfield, in Park Ridge at 2 p.m.

"That was a very different Loyola team that we beat tonight than the Loyola team that held us to 25 points last year.," Maine South head coach Tony Lavorato said. "Tom (Loyola head coach Tom Livatino) had a great team last year that could have won the state title.He graduated his starting lineup and I have some very good players returning, from last season.

"Loyola has ended our season the last two years here and it is great for the kids to get the win here tonight!

I'm 2-3 now against Tom but 0-3 in the postseason.

"Anywhere Sean Gallery plays for me, Sean plays well. I have to get these kids home and have them get some rest and come back tomorrow at 2. We get to play Deerfield tomorrow at home. I am so happy to be playing again!"


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