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Published March 5, 2013

Ferndale girls continue to roll, beat University Prep to earn shot at Country Day

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Ferndale coach Eric Lloyd was all smiles Tuesday night as his team picked up its 21st victory of the season. The Eagles beat University Prep 61-36 and move on to a Class B regional final Thursday night.

WEST BLOOMFIELD — He’d love to say he has some rare formula, or a secret weapon to use as the reason his team continues to play at such a high level.

But as Eric Lloyd spoke moments after his squad’s most recent victory, the Ferndale High’s girls basketball coach went back to the same message he’s preached all season. 

“We played good, fundamental basketball,” he said with a smile following a 61-36 victory against Detroit University Prep in a Class B regional semifinal Tuesday night at West Bloomfield High. “It’s what we’ve done all year, and the girls did that here. It was a good win for us, one we wanted.”

The Eagles (21-3) led just 10-9 after the first quarter, but were seemingly in control of the game from start to finish. The lead swelled to 26-19 by halftime, and the exclamation point came with a 20-8 advantage in the final quarter.

“They played as a team,” Lloyd added. “They played as a unit, and that’s what I’m most happy about.”

Lloyd, in his first year with the Eagles, got his first coaching victory of the season with a 68-44 victory against Prep on Dec. 7.

“That was to our advantage, but when you get to the regional round, every team you play is better,” he added. Micaela Ellis led Ferndale with a game-high 22 points. Amber Williams added 16.

The Eagles, in the regional finals for the first time since the late 1990s, will face Beverly Hills Country Day at 6 p.m. March 7.

Country Day beat Chandler Park Academy 50-43 in overtime.

“We’re going to be ready to battle,” Lloyd said. “We can’t look past anyone, but if we play the type of game we’re capable of, we’ll have a chance.”

Amani Hutson led University Prep (11-12) with 20 points. 

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