Troy High boys hoops being led by seniors

By: Zachary Manning | Troy Times | Published March 17, 2021

 Troy High’s D’Anthony Hamilton goes up for a layup against Rochester Hills Stoney Creek earlier this season. At press time, the Colts were 5-5 overall.

Troy High’s D’Anthony Hamilton goes up for a layup against Rochester Hills Stoney Creek earlier this season. At press time, the Colts were 5-5 overall.

Photo by Deb Jacques

 Troy High’s Brody Parker looks to get by a Rochester Hills Stoney Creek defender earlier this season. The Colts split a pair of games with the Cougars this season.

Troy High’s Brody Parker looks to get by a Rochester Hills Stoney Creek defender earlier this season. The Colts split a pair of games with the Cougars this season.

Photo by Deb Jacques

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TROY — After coming up just a little bit short last season, the Troy High boys basketball team has put itself in a position to compete for an Oakland Activities Association White Division title yet again.

At press time, the Colts were 5-5 overall and 4-3 in division play. In the OAA White, they trailed Bloomfield Hills High, which was 5-2 in the league at press time. However, with games against the Black Hawks and Southfield A&T, the Colts still have some control of their own destiny.

Should it win those two games, Troy would clinch at least a share of the league title. The Colts beat Southfield by double digits and fell by six to Bloomfield Hills a couple weeks ago.

“(The) league title is very important to us, especially since we fell short last year. We approach every game by just doing what we need to do as a team to give us the best chance to win,” senior Jake Emerzian said.  

The Colts aren’t lacking a veteran presence, as seniors make up over half the roster. Coach Gary Fralick believes that to be a key reason for their success this season.

Having guys that have played a lot of minutes in close games can go a long way. In addition to that veteran presence, putting the ball in the basket has also been a strong point for the Colts, though consistency has eluded them at times.

In their wins, the Colts are averaging 65.4 points. In the losses, they are averaging just 47 points. Fralick understands that there will be some “off” shooting nights, but he’d like to see more consistency on both ends of the floor.

However, having veteran guys who understand the ebbs and flows of a basketball season, Troy is confident in its ability to find a spark and get hot down the stretch.

“We knew that, coming into this year, that we were going to be a veteran team. A lot of guys got major minutes last year and even the year before,” Fralick said. “Our starting five is all seniors and even coming off the bench, we have another senior who plays a good number of minutes. We rely on them and think that they’re going to make the good decisions down the stretch in a close game that will allow you to get a chance to win the game.”

And now the playoffs are right around the corner. The Colts’ district features two league opponents in Rochester Hills Stoney Creek and Rochester High, and two teams from the Macomb Area Conference in Utica Eisenhower and Utica High.

Troy will open district play against Eisenhower March 25. The district will be hosted by Stoney Creek. At press time, Eisenhower was 5-6 overall.

In terms of potential, Fralick knows his team has what it takes to make some noise in the postseason. As has been the case all season, hitting shots will be key to the Colts’ success.

“When we’re playing well, we’re a hard team to beat,” Fralick said. “I would just say we need to have consistency, which we haven’t always had so far this year. I think the consistency of coming out and executing and moving the ball on offense and getting that really good shot instead of taking a little bit of a tougher shot off of two passes — take a really, really good shot off of four or five or six passes — then you’re going to give yourself a much better chance to be consistent and to beat the good teams.”

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