The City Game: New Venue, Fresh Talents Headline Chicago Elite Classic

The City Game focuses coverage on the game of basketball at the amateur levels in and around the city of Chicago

By Chris Pennant (@kwandarykitten)

The 2018 Chicago Elite Classic tips off tonight and for the first time in the tournament’s history, it will be played at Wintrust Arena in the South Loop.

This seventh annual edition of the showcase, which kicks off the holiday tournament season for many of the top high school programs in this area, features 22 teams (20 men’s and two women’s) playing in the new(ish) 10,000+ seat arena, with tournament hosts Whitney Young and Simeon headlining against California’s Mater Dei and LeBron James’ alma mater St. Vincent-St. Mary’s (Ohio), respectively.

Both Young and Simeon made the final sixteen bracket at the Class 4A state championships last season, with the Dolphins defeating Simeon on their way to a second-place finish overall.

Today’s slate features the Whitney Young women’s team taking on Monteverde Academy (FL) along with Catholic League stalwarts St. Rita and St. Ignatius, and a great suburban rivalry game pitting Oak Park and River Forest against Fenwick.

Saturday’s top games include Evanston Township facing Uplift, the Wildkits will be trying to rally after a home upset against Glenbrook South Thursday night. IHSA 3A titleholders Morgan Park will size itself up against Vashon (St. Louis, MO), and defending 2A champions Orr will do the same against Kansas’ Sunrise Christian, which may feature the tournament’s most talented group overall. (See the full schedule below.)

Players to Watch

Markese Jacobs, Uplift — The 5-11 Jacobs (DePaul) is the #3 prospect in Illinois and the 12th-ranked point guard nationally, according to 247Sports. Jacobs’ athleticism will give Evanston a LOT of problems on the court where many in Chicago hope he’ll dominate for the next few years.

Malik Hall, Sunrise Christian — A Michigan State commit and Aurora native, the 6-7 Hall is a a talented ball-handler, defender and finisher at the rim. 247Sports ranks him #77 in the country.

CEC games take place tonight and Saturday, with games starting at 6 pm tonight and 10:30 am tomorrow. Tickets are available at the Wintrust Center box office and through Ticketmaster. For more information on the Chicago Elite Classic tournament, visit

Tournament Schedule


6 pm – Whitney Young vs. Montverde Academy (FL) (Girls)

7:30 pm – St. Rita vs. St. Ignatius

9 pm – Oak Park-River Forest vs. Fenwick


10:30 am – Bloomington vs. Chaminade (MO)

12 pm – Bloom vs. West Aurora

1:30 pm – Uplift vs. Evanston

3 pm – Orr vs. Sunrise Christian (KS)

4:30 pm – Bogan vs. Dominican (WI)

6 pm – Morgan Park vs. Vashon (MO)

7:30 pm – Whitney Young vs. Mater Dei (CA)

9 pm – Simeon vs. St. Vincent-St. Mary (OH)

Chris Pennant covers the Chicago Bulls and basketball in general for WARR

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