Basketball

Published January 18, 2012

When consideration is given as to which teams are most likely to contend for the Macomb Area Conference Gold Division title in girls varsity basketball this season, the two that seem to be getting most of the attention are Sterling Heights High and Macomb L’Anse Creuse North.

Given that the Stallions and the Crusaders were the top two teams in the division last season, it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that they are the ones stealing the spotlight in the 2011-2012 campaign. But the team most likely to sneak in under the radar just may be Warren Lincoln.

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Published January 12, 2012

It may be relatively early in the season, but the Mount Clemens girls varsity basketball team has already achieved half of its four team goals.

The first goal was to get off to a good start by winning their first game of the season. The Battling Bathers did just that, defeating Detroit Denby in their opening game.

Mount Clemens also wanted to make sure it came away with a victory against perhaps its biggest rival, the Clintondale Dragons. It can mark “mission accomplished” next to that goal, as well.

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Published January 11, 2012

CLAWSON — Clawson High School senior guard Tywaun Watkins and his teammates held Marine City High scoreless for the first 5:29 of a Macomb Area Conference Silver Division matchup Jan. 11 on their way to a convincing 60-39 home win.

“We know the importance of locking down on defense,” said Watkins, who recorded five steals for the Trojans and led the team with 18 points. “We’re just patient (on defense) and we read things right and try and translate that into offense.”

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Published January 11, 2012

TROY — It’s a challenge that he and his team will face almost every night of league play, one he’s grown accustomed to in his less than two years on the Troy High bench.

It is one, in fact, he’s taken a certain appreciation to.

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Published January 11, 2012

SOUTHFIELD — The faces of the starting lineup are different at Southfield High, but according to coach Gary Teasley, the standards remain the same.

The Blue Jays come into this boys basketball season without a returning starter from a core that took them to the state semifinals the past two seasons.

“It hasn’t been a major adjustment, because I enjoy coaching. Southfield is the same high school, but different faces. We have an expectation,” Teasley said during practice Jan. 4.

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Published January 11, 2012

Warren De La Salle’s basketball team is out to make history this year.

In the more than 85 years since the historic and competitive league has named a champion for its top division, only once has a school won four titles in a row. Novi-Detroit Catholic Central, back when the school was actually in Detroit, finished first every year from 1949-1952.

De La Salle, the current three-time defending champions, will look to win its fourth and join the Shamrocks in the record books as the Pilots enter Catholic High School League play this week.

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Published January 11, 2012

MOUNT CLEMENS — A change in personnel isn’t enough to sway Mount Clemens High School boys basketball coach Kurt Wilson’s thinking that his team can repeat as champions of the Macomb Area Conference Gold Division.

“We have scorers this year, guys who can get us points even when their jumper isn’t falling and guys who can jump over the rim,” said Wilson, in his sixth year with the Bathers.

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Published January 11, 2012

Heading into a long battle, Roseville High girls basketball coach Angela Houghton did what any leader would do — she sent her team through boot camp.

Figuratively speaking, of course.

In preparation of what’s expected to be some tough Macomb Area Conference Blue Division action, the Panthers played a challenging non-league slate to open the season.

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Published December 22, 2011

The leadership and experience seniors can provide to a team is viewed as a precious commodity in the eyes of those who coach on the varsity level.

South Lake girls varsity basketball coach Shay Lewis will not be afforded any such luxuries, as the Cavaliers do not have a senior among them this season.

In fact, Lewis’ starting lineup consists of two freshmen, two sophomores and a junior.

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Published December 21, 2011

Last season was a banner one for Clintondale’s girls varsity basketball team. The Dragons finished the season 12-5 overall and went 12-2 in league play en route to a MAC Silver championship.

Despite the success they enjoyed, from the players’ perspective, there may have been one slight glitch to the 2010-2011 season: The Dragons had to share their MAC Silver title with the New Haven Rockets.

Clintondale’s goal for the 2011-2012 season is to be a little bit greedier this time around.

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Published December 15, 2011

CLINTON TOWNSHIP —Clinton Township Clintondale boys basketball coach Rob Townsend said that because of the style of play he is implementing, all 14 guys on his depth chart will see the floor in each of the squad’s games.

“We’re going to press 50 to 75 percent of the time, so we’re going to need all of our guys to be ready,” said Townsend, in his fifth year as the Dragons head coach. “We’re going to try to get offense from our defense, from traps and presses, depending on the situation.”

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Published December 7, 2011

LATHRUP VILLAGE — This was intensity, defined in every way.

Three-on-three play with take backs.

No out of bounds lines, no foul calls, just wholehearted intensity from one whistle to the next.

With a quick glance, it may even be confused with chaos, and rightfully so.

But this is exactly what Michele Jackson wants.

This is exactly the way her team needs to play.

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Published December 7, 2011

ST. CLAIR SHORES — The loss of key contributors from last year’s team has led St. Clair Shores Lake Shore basketball coach Todd Stevens to implement a new style of play this season.

“We’re going to have to get out and run,” said Stevens, in his eighth season with the program. “Our tallest guys are 6 foot 2, so we’re gonna have to get up and down the floor because of a lack of size.”

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Published December 7, 2011

“Success breeds success” is a cliché commonly used in sports.

And before Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse’s boys basketball team has even played an official game this season, that saying seems to be true for the Lancers.

Last year, the squad won its first district title in 35 years.

At tryouts this year, coach John Haas began to see the dividends of that success pay off.

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Published November 30, 2011

With the winter sports season around the corner, East Detroit’s girls basketball team is looking forward to a bright future.

The Shamrocks have a young team and a new coach.

“We are young, small, fast and extremely aggressive,” coach Krysta Kreyger said. “We have a good balance, and every one is competing and working hard together.”

The team is eager get going and put last year’s winless season out of mind.

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Published November 30, 2011

If what he has witnessed in practice is any indication of things to come, then Lake Shore girls basketball coach Jimmy Roehm likes his team’s chances of being in the thick of things in the MAC Gold this season.

There are a couple of assets that nearly every basketball coach hopes for when they look at their roster, and Roehm will have both of them to work with when his Shorians team takes to the court in 2011-2012.

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Published November 23, 2011

TROY — Less than 30 minutes apart, and only a few miles from one another, a pair of long-time friends and former teammates took part in what had served as a lifelong dream.

For Troy High’s Karin Moss and Troy Athens’ Sinclair Russell, playing college basketball is now a reality.

The pair of senior standouts at their respective schools signed their national letters of intent Nov. 14, officially declaring themselves college basketball players.

Moss to Buffalo

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Published June 28, 2011

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Many of the area’s best recently graduated high school basketball players took part in a pair of All-Star games June 16 at Macomb Community College in Warren.

The budding event showcased the top talents the county has to offer for the second straight year.

“The All-Star games are definitely growing,” MCC women’s coach Jay Ritchie said. “We not only had great turnout from the players, we had great attendance with over 1,000 in the building for the games.”

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Published May 25, 2011

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As Gregory Kelser added an east side location to his youth basketball camp circuit last year, he wondered what the response might be.

It was so overwhelming that the former NBA player and current Detroit Pistons analyst has decided to add an additional east side camp this summer.

“We thought the response was terrific,” Kelser said.

Kelser will now hold three separate camps — at Grosse Pointe North High School July 18-22, at Grosse Pointe South July 25-29 and at Birmingham Groves July 11-15.

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Published April 18, 2011

DETROIT — Don’t label them lucky and don’t refer to them as flukes.
These Shamrocks knew how to win.

In a three-year period, the core of the East Detroit boys basketball team won 56 games.
Not exactly one-hit wonders.

And when that trio of Ethan Blackwell, Johnnie Mills and Charles Baskin were joined by Jalan Smith, C.J. Bates and Steven Lewis in prominent playing roles this season — the six seniors produced the most successful season in the past 45 years of program history.

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