UD Jesuit boys hoops pulls away from De La Salle in regional semi

By: Jason Carmel Davis | Online Only | Published March 5, 2019

 Warren De La Salle forward Josef Gjonaj handles the ball in a March 5 regional semifinal loss to University of Detroit Jesuit. Gjonaj led all scorers in the game with 26 points.

Warren De La Salle forward Josef Gjonaj handles the ball in a March 5 regional semifinal loss to University of Detroit Jesuit. Gjonaj led all scorers in the game with 26 points.

Photo by Patricia O'Blenes

 University of Detroit Jesuit forward Daniel Friday goes up for a layup in his team's 62-51 March 5 regional semifinal win over Warren De La Salle. Friday led the Cubs in the game with 20 points.

University of Detroit Jesuit forward Daniel Friday goes up for a layup in his team's 62-51 March 5 regional semifinal win over Warren De La Salle. Friday led the Cubs in the game with 20 points.

Photo by Patricia O'Blenes

SOUTHFIELD — The University of Detroit Jesuiit boys basketball team proved too much to handle for Warren De La Salle, as the Cubs outlasted the Pilots 62-51 in a March 5 Division 1 regional semifinal.

The Cubs (22-2) advance to face Grosse Pointe North (11-12) in a regional final set for 7 p.m. March 7 at Southfield A & T. Grosse Pointe North beat Birmingham Brother rice 38-35 March 5 to get to the regional final.

Senior wing Daniel Friday led a balanced UD Jesuit attack with 20 points. Four Cubs scored in double figures.

Junior forward Josef Gjonaj led all scorers with 26 points, including three 3-pointers. De La Salle senior forward Matt Osterhout scored 11 points, but was held scoreless in the second half.

The game was tight throughout the first half in a meeting of opponents that are very familiar with one another. The matchup, the third between the teams this season, was tied 12-12 after the fist quarter and UD Jesuit led 28-27 at halftime. Cubs senior guard Caleb Hunter, who scored 10 points, hit a 3-pointer with seven seconds left in the second quarter to put his team ahead.

UD Jesuit in the third quarter went on a 16-0 run to pull ahead 46-32. The Pilots, led by Gjonaj, battled back to cut the lead to 46-40 after three quarters. 

The Cubs, 3-0 against the Pilots this season, led by as much as 13 in the fourth quarter.

De La Salle (13-10) loses three players to graduation: guard Michael Sherman, who scored five points in the game, forward Tyrelle Stephens and Osterhout.

The Pilots have 12 players eligible to return next season, including four players who started the regional semifinal: sophomore guard William Smythe, junior forwards Nicholas Troszak and Ryan Buszka, and Gjonaj.

The Pilots this season won their 23rd district title in the last 25 seasons.

For continuous coverage of the state boys basketball playoffs, check www.candgnews.com.