Every week The Catch and Shoot will name a Player of the Week, Freshman of the Week, Team of the Week and Game of the Week from the five Division I schools in the Chicago area.
Here are the winners for the fifth week of the season (Dec. 14-Dec. 20):
Player of the Week
Bryant McIntosh, Northwestern
McIntosh has emerged as arguably a top-three point guard in the Big Ten. In a pair of wins for Northwestern last week, McIntosh averaged 13.5 points (although he struggled from the field), 8.0 assists and 4.5 rebounds.
The sophomore is now averaging 15.4 points and 6.5 assists this season with a 58.8 true shooting percentage. He ranks second in the Big Ten in assist rate (behind Michigan State’s Denzel Valentine),
Honorable mentions: Myke Henry, DePaul; Alex Olah, Northwestern; Montel James, Loyola; Clemmye Owens V, Chicago State
Freshman of the Week
Fred Sims Jr., Chicago State
Sims recorded 12 points Saturday in Chicago State’s upset of Western Illinois. The 6-foot-4 guard scored nine of his points in the first half as the Cougars took a 41-40 lead into halftime. He then made a 3-pointer on the team’s first possession of the second half.
Sims is now averaging 8.2 points per game and shooting 34.1 percent from beyond the arc.
Honorable mentions: Aaron Falzon, Northwestern; Dominique Matthews, UIC
Team of the Week
Northwestern has won seven games in a row. No other Chicago team has won back-to-back games since DePaul edged Drake nearly two weeks ago.
Last week, Northwestern blew out Mississippi Valley State — although it took a while for the Wildcats to assert its dominance. They followed with an overtime win at DePaul.
The Wildcats now rank No. 53 in KenPom, their best mark since the 2011-12 season.
Game of the Week
Northwestern 78, DePaul 70 (OT)
Northwestern trailed by six points late in the second half as DePaul’s win probability reached higher than 85 percent, per KenPom. A quick 7-0 run gave the Wildcats a brief lead with 2:58 remaining, and the game went to overtime tied 61-61.
After DePaul took the first lead of overtime, Northwestern freshman Aaron Falzon made a 3-pointer to give Northwestern a 66-65 lead. The Wildcats led the rest of the way.