Boys basketball: Presenting the 2023-24 Herald-News All-Area Team

40 of the area’s best on the court this past winter

Bolingbrook’s Joshua Pettigrew pulls in a rebound against Romeoville on Wednesday, Jan. 3rd, 2024 in Bolingbrook.

Meet the 2023 Herald-News All-Area boys basketball team:

Lincoln-Way West’s Eli Bach draws a could heading upcourt against Lincoln-Way East on Tuesday, Jan. 16th, 2024 in New Lenox.

Eli Bach, Lincoln-Way West, sr., G: Bach, the Athlete of the Year in the SouthWest Suburban Red Division, had little problem finding his way into the scoring column. He finished with a school-record 589 points this season, including a 42-point outburst against Bradley-Bourbonnais. He also set L-W West records for single-season rebounding (214), career rebounding (493) and free throws in a season (174). He finished third all-time in program history with 1,227 points.

Plainfield North's Jeffrey Fleming goes of strong for a layup during a conference game against Joliet Central on Friday, Jan. 19, 2024, at Joliet. (Dean Reid for Shaw Local News Network)

Jeffrey Fleming, Plainfield North, sr., F: Fleming averaged a double-double, finishing with a scoring average of 20.9 and a rebounding rate of 10 per game. He finished his Plainfield North career with the program’s single-season and career rebound records and the second-leading scorer in Plainfield North history. He saved one of his best performances for near the end, netting 37 points and snaring 16 rebounds in an upset win over Metea Valley in the Class 4A regionals.

Joliet West's Justus Mcnair soars to the basket for a shot during the Class 4A sectional semifinal against Homewood Flossmoor at Rich Township on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, at Richton Park. (Dean Reid for Shaw Local News Network)

Justus McNair, Joliet West, sr., G: The Herald-News Player of the Year, McNair was a dominant player in almost every facet of the game for the Tigers. A Valparaiso commit, McNair averaged over 21 points per game, nearly 30 a game in the postseason for Joliet West while averaging seven rebounds and four assists.

Bolingbrook’s Joshua Pettigrew puts up a shot against Romeoville on Wednesday, Jan. 3rd, 2024 in Bolingbrook.

JT Pettigrew, Bolingbrook, jr., F: Pettigrew was one of two area players who averaged a double-double this season (Plainfield North’s Jeffrey Fleming was the other), and at times he completely took over games. He finished the season averaging 17 points and 10 rebounds per game and was an imposing shot blocker for Bolingbrook, averaging three per game.

Bolingbrook's Davion Thompson (3) drives the baseline against Oswego East's Andrew Pohlman (21) during a basketball game at Oswego East High School in Oswego on Wednesday, Jan 10, 2024.

Davion Thompson, Bolingbrook, fr., G: It was a stunningly impressive debut for Thompson to varsity basketball. In a year where there were several standout freshmen statewide, Thompson could easily be considered at or very near the top of that list. A highly efficient scoring source, Thompson averaged 19.3 points per game and eclipsed 30 points several times. The freshman already has garnered multiple Division I offers, and that list certainly will grow.


Zion Kostyra, Joliet Central, sr, G

EJ Mosley Jr., Romeoville, jr., G

DJ Porter Jr., Romeoville, jr., G

BJ Powell, Lincoln-Way East, so., G

DJ Strong, Bolingbrook, sr., G


Josh Aniceto, Bolingbrook, sr., G

Trey Brost, Bolingbrook, so., G

KJ Cathey, Bolingbrook, sr., G

Seth Chaney, Providence, jr., G

Kyle Farrell, Wilmington, jr., G

Zion Gross, Joliet West, jr., G

Cale Halpin, Gardner-South Wilmington, sr., G

Micah Hamilton, Minooka, sr., G

DJ Hampton, Minooka, jr., G

Jemarcho Holman, Joliet Central, sr., G

Mickeis Johnson, Romeoville, so., G

Reid Juster, Wilmington, sr., G-F

Ryan Kettman, Wilmington, so., G-F

Jason Lawani, Bolingbrook, sr., F

Ben McLaughlin, Lincoln-Way Central, sr., G

Gabe McHugh, Coal City, jr., F

Jaylin Murphy, Joliet Central, sr., F

Ehi Ogbomo, Plainfield East, sr., G

Jacob Reardon, Reed-Custer, jr., F

Ryan Runaas, Lemont, sr., G

Brent Taylor, Lincoln-Way East, jr., G

Karson Thomas, Lincoln-Way East, so., G

Danny Thompson, Joliet Central, jr., G

Devin Tyda, Plainfield South, sr., G

Ruben Velasco, Peotone, jr., G

Adam Walker, Romeoville, jr., C

Brandon Weiss, Peotone, jr. G

Jack Wheeler, Morris, jr., F

Drew Wills, Joliet Catholic, sr., G-F

AJ Zweeres, Morris, sr., G