Hockey, girls hoops teams set for first round of playoff action

By: Mike Moore | Farmington Press | Published February 19, 2018

 Farmington High junior guard Iasia Rimson and the rest of the Falcons are in a Class A district and face Southfield A&T in a 5:30 p.m. Feb. 28 semifinal at Farmington Hills Mercy.

Farmington High junior guard Iasia Rimson and the rest of the Falcons are in a Class A district and face Southfield A&T in a 5:30 p.m. Feb. 28 semifinal at Farmington Hills Mercy.

Photo by Sarah Purlee

 Farmington High’s Nathan Arnold, left, and Farmington Hills United’s Alex Feldman are pictured in a game recently. Both teams are set to begin the postseason next week.

Farmington High’s Nathan Arnold, left, and Farmington Hills United’s Alex Feldman are pictured in a game recently. Both teams are set to begin the postseason next week.

Photo by Donna Agusti

FARMINGTON/FARMINGTON HILLS — In less than three weeks’ time, the first baseballs and softballs will pop into gloves and off bats, track shoes will lace up, and soccer balls will bounce on the pitch.

Yes, in roughly 18 days or so, the first practices of the spring athletic season will officially commence.

This means two key things: The snow needs to melt, and secondly, the winter seasons are about to embark on their postseason tournaments.

For girls basketball and boys hockey, the launch date is Feb. 26, with districts and regionals, respectively, hitting the go button.

Here’s a quick look at the local brackets in each sport as the drive to a state title begins.


On the hardwood

Before the state playoffs launch, Farmington High had its sight set on an Oakland Activities Association Blue Division title.

At press time, the Falcons were 12-5 overall and 8-1 in divisional play with three games still to decide the top spot.

But once the playoffs begin, Farmington will have a whole new host of challenges, namely taking on a team that is expected to make a run at a state title.

Farmington is in the Farmington Hills Mercy Class A district and faces Southfield A&T in a 5:30 p.m. Feb. 28 semifinal at Mercy.

“The kids are coming off one of the best seasons the school has had in a long time,” Farmington coach Laura Guzman said. “We believe we can compete with everyone. If we can keep the game close, we will have a chance. We have six seniors who will want to go out with a bang. They aren’t going to just let anyone get the best of us.”

On the other side of the bracket, Birmingham Groves (14-2) and Mercy (15-2) square off in a 6 p.m. Feb. 26 opener. The winner faces North Farmington (11-5) in a 7 p.m. Feb. 28 semifinal.

The district final is scheduled for 6 p.m. March 2 at Mercy, with the winner headed to the Southfield A&T regional.


On the ice

The hockey state playoffs are here today and gone tomorrow, so it seems, with the entire tournament wrapping up in less than two weeks.

For the Farmington Hills United squad, the playoffs are all about hitting the reset button.

“It’s cliché, for sure, but after the season we’ve had, we have a chance to go out and win a playoff game,” Flyers coach Ken Anderson said.

At press time, the Flyers were 1-19-0. The lone win was a 5-2 victory over West Bloomfield High on Feb. 1.

And, fittingly enough, those same teams will meet to start the Division 2 playoffs with a 7:20 p.m. Feb. 28 tilt at the Lakeland Ice Arena in Waterford Township.

West Bloomfield was 9-10-3 at press time.

“We faced them once, and it wasn’t a great showing,” Lakers coach Logan McLean said. “It was one of those nights where we came out and were slow to start. When you do that, it’s tough to win. We’re a different team now. We’ve worked hard to get back to where we need to be.”

“Our mindset has to be — even though we beat them — is we’re going to expect a better game from them,” Anderson said. “So we have to be a much better team.”

The regional final for that bracket is set for 5 p.m. March 3 at the Hartland Sports Center.

In D-3 action, Farmington High (10-8-5) opens with a 7 p.m. Feb. 26 tilt against Livonia Churchill at Eddie Edgar Arena in Livonia. The winner faces Livonia Franklin at 7 p.m. Feb. 28, with the final at 7:15 p.m. March 3 at the Allen Park Civic Arena.

The other side of the bracket includes Allen Park High, Allen Park Cabrini and Dearborn Divine Child.