Bishop Foley boys basketball hopes to find momentum

By: Christian Davis | Madison - Park News | Published February 12, 2014

Madison Heights Bishop Foley boys basketball coach Marc West admits there was frustration, and even a toll taken on his squad after three heart-breaking losses earlier in the season.

The Ventures fell to Troy Athens after being tied with 30 seconds to play, lost to Birmingham Brother Rice after being up by a basket with 12 seconds remaining, and then lost to Ann Arbor Gabrielle Richard when it scored five points in the last 30 seconds, including a tip in at the buzzer to steal a victory.

“It’s frustrating for a coach, but you’re constantly thinking about what is going on with the kids, and what you can do to help and make sure it doesn’t happen,” West said. “You want that break — you want that other team to miss that shot finally. And vice versa: you want to see your guys hit that big shot, get that rebound, make that stop. It hasn’t happened for us yet.”

Not yet, but West is fully confident the momentum is turning in favor of the Ventures.

The Ventures were 4-8 overall and 3-4 in the Catholic High School League AA Division. Foley has four total losses by five points or fewer.

“We played a lot of really good competition and some really good basketball. We’re just waiting for it to turn around for us in the second half of the season,” West said. “We’re not in those games without playing well, so we’re not miles away from where we want to be. It’s just about making tweaks so we can win those close games instead of losing them.”

West made adjustments on both sides of the court, saying that he was able to see in the previous games what players were successful in what roles.

The result was a 50-48 victory Jan. 31 at home against Gabrielle Richard, the same squad that beat the Ventures by a point three weeks prior.

“That was kind of the start of it; we played pretty well,” the coach said.

Foley’s strength has been its defense, allowing only one team all season to hit the 60-point mark.

“Even in the losses, we held them down to around the 50-or-below mark. Offensively, we’ve had six different guys score double digits. We really have to get more consistency out of it, where at least two of those guys are doing it on the same night.

“So we see the potential, and the fact that we competed at a high level, it kind of shows that we’re not that far away.”

The Ventures are in a race to qualify for the AB tournament, which takes the top four teams from the AA Division. Foley is tied with Dearborn Divine Child for the last spot.

Foley then turns its attention to Class C district action, where it’s won six straight titles.

“There’s definitely a positive vibe that we’re ready to turn the corner; we just have to go out and do it,” West said. “We have to stop talking about doing it — go out there and take care of business.”

Catch the Ventures against Orchard Lake St. Mary’s at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 12 on the road.