By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
We’re almost there. In fact, by delaying this week’s Breslin Bound report until Tuesday, we’re a day closer to the end of this boys basketball regular season and beginning of District play Monday.
Next week, we’ll preview the most intriguing District brackets in every division. Click here to get an early look at those matchups.
Week in Review
The countdown of last week’s five most intriguing results:
1. Benton Harbor 72, River Rouge 62 – The Tigers won again in this rematch from last season’s Class B Semifinals – and possible preview of a Division 2 matchup coming next month.
2. New Haven 64, Roseville 55 – The Rockets won the Macomb Area Conference Red/White Tournament title by defeating one Red co-champ in this game after defeating the other Sterling Heights Stevenson in the semifinal.
3. Detroit U-D Jesuit 63, Detroit Catholic Central 54 – The Cubs finished a perfect run through both the Detroit Catholic League Central and then A-B Tournament bracket, with DCC finishing second in both.
4. Detroit Cass Tech 80, Detroit Renaissance 56 – The Technicians have won nine of their last 11 games and with this victory added a Detroit Public School League Tournament title to a shared Midtown championship.
5. Muskegon 66, Kalamazoo Central 59 – The Big Reds claimed this matchup of league leaders to extend their winning streak to 11.
With an eye toward March, here are two teams in each division making sparks:
• Detroit U-D Jesuit (17-2) – The Cubs have won 11 straight games, with the most notable of the run against DCC twice and Flint Beecher by a point on Jan. 26. The only losses this winter came early, against New Haven on Dec. 1 and then Illinois championship contender Chicago Morgan Park on Jan. 5. Jesuit has reached the MHSAA Quarterfinals five straight seasons and could be on the verge of running that streak to six.
• Ann Arbor Pioneer (17-2) – The Pioneers, 11-10 a season ago, have locked up the Southeastern Conference Red title in a league where four of six teams have winning records. They added an impressive 56-44 win over the weekend against PSL Midtown co-champ Detroit Martin Luther King. The only losses came before the new year, against eventual league winners Canton and Wayne Memorial.
• Fremont (16-1) – A 60-59 overtime win over Grant on Friday clinched the Central State Activities Association Gold title, Fremont’s second straight after sharing last season with Big Rapids. This championship is outright, ironically after the Packers opened league play with their only defeat Dec. 7 to Reed City. Next up, Fremont will go for a second straight District title as well.
• Ovid-Elsie (15-1) – The Marauders have clinched a share of the inaugural Mid-Michigan Activities Conference championship, avenging their lone loss of the season Friday with a 69-66 double-overtime victory over second-place (tied) Mount Morris. Ovid-Elsie can clinch outright against the other second-place team, New Lothrop, on Thursday. The Marauders entered the new league coming off last season’s Tri-Valley Conference West title, and they too will play next week for a second straight District trophy.
• Iron Mountain (17-0) – The Mountaineers have followed up on last season’s Class C Quarterfinal run with the Western Peninsula Athletic Conference Iron title, plus a repeat championship in the Mid-Peninsula Athletic Conference. Three of Iron Mountain’s first four games this winter were decided by single digits – they haven’t had another closer than 10 since Dec. 7.
• Maple City Glen Lake (16-2) – The Lakers clinched an outright Northwest Conference title with a win over Benzie Central on Saturday and have won six straight since falling to Division 2 Williamston at Saginaw Valley State on Jan. 21. The only other defeat was to another strong Division 2 opponent, Holland Christian, on Dec. 28. Both losses no doubt served as great prep as Glen Lake looks to get back to Breslin after finishing Class C runner-up a year ago.
• Dollar Bay (16-3) – After making the Class D Semifinals coming off a perfect regular season in 2018, the Blue Bolts started this one slowly (relatively speaking) at 4-2. But they’ve won nine straight and clinched a share of the Copper Mountain Conference Copper Country championship, with a chance to finish the title outright Friday if they can avenge an earlier loss to Chassell. Dollar Bay also won’t see nemesis Bessemer (the other two defeats) until possibly the Regional if both advance next week.
• Wyoming Tri-unity Christian (15-3) – The Defenders sit second in the Alliance League thanks to a one-point loss Jan. 22 to Division 3 and league leader Potter’s House Christian. But Tri-unity could make another of its usual long postseason runs, especially with Potter’s House in a different division after eliminating the Defenders in the District a year ago. Tri-unity’s only other losses were to Division 3 Pewamo-Westphalia and Grandville Calvin Christian.
Be on the lookout for results of these games coming up:
Tuesday – McBain (14-3) at Manton (13-4) – McBain’s 45-42 win on Feb. 5 has the Ramblers still sitting atop the Highland Conference standings, but a Manton win could result in a shared championship when this week is done.
Thursday – Howell (14-5) at Canton (18-1) – The overall Kensington Lakes Activities Association championship game pits the top two teams from the West division.
Friday – DeWitt (16-2) at Okemos (17-1) – The Chiefs own a share of the Capital Area Activities Conference Blue title thanks in part to a 41-35 win over the Panthers on Jan. 18, but DeWitt can grab a share by winning this rematch.
Friday – Grand Rapids Forest Hills Northern (18-0) at Grand Rapids Northview (14-3) – FHN won the first meeting 64-53 on Jan. 25, but a Northview win could mean a shared Ottawa-Kent Conference White title or more if Northern gets upset Tuesday.
Friday – Detroit Cass Tech (14-5) vs. Detroit U-D Jesuit (17-2) at Calihan Hall – The annual Operation Friendship game pits PSL and Catholic League champs and likely Division 1 state contenders as well.
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PHOTO: Iron Mountain's Marcus Johnson works to get to the basket during a Feb. 1 win over Ishpeming. Iron Mountain is one of 14 unbeaten teams left statewide. (Photo by Cara Kamps.)
Foster Loyer’s four-season career at Clarkston from 2014-15 through 2017-18 certainly must be considered among the most accomplished in state history as he led the Wolves to back-to-back Class A championships in 2017 and 2018 and is listed in the record book 25 times.
Among Loyer’s most notable entries were 2,325 career points (12th most), 272 career 3-pointers (tied for ninth), records of 119 consecutive free throws and 634 career free throws, a .921 free-throw percentage as a junior (tied for fourth) and .900 career percentage (second), 589 career assists (sixth), 278 career steals (15th) and 102 games played (tied for sixth).
Loyer went on to play at Michigan State and then Davidson.
See below for more recent record book entries for boys basketball.
Four Onaway standouts were added for single-season and/or career records. Jager Mix, who graduated in 2022, was added for 92 steals last season and 225 over his four-season career. Kevin Pearson, a 2021 grad, was added for 81 steals as a senior and 247 over his career. Joe Sigsby, a 2016 grad, was added for 127 steals, and Jadin Mix was added for 124 in 2021-22. Their totals rank ninth and tied for 10th, respectively, on that all-time list. Jager Mix also was added for 967 career rebounds, and Onaway as a team was added for tying the record for most points in a quarter with 49 during the first quarter of a win over Fife Lake Forest Area on Feb. 3, 2022. Jager Mix is playing at Alpena Community College, and Jadin Mix is a senior this school year.
Uchenna Amene was added for 11 steals in a March 7, 2022, game against West Bloomfield Frankel Jewish Academy and for 97 steals total over 25 games. He was a sophomore at Southfield Christian that season and now is a senior at Detroit Catholic Central.
Owen Franklin graduated from Oscoda in 2021 as the school’s all-time leading scorer, and nearly 44 percent of those 1,477 points came on 3-pointers. Franklin made the state career 3-pointers list with 216 over four seasons. He’s playing baseball at Northwood.
Traverse City Christian sophomore Reece Broderick became one of the state’s most accomplished long-distance shooters in just his second year of high school this past winter, drilling 104 3-pointers – good for third-most for one season all-time – over 23 games. He connected on 42 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc.
A pair of Rudyard four-year varsity standouts entered the record book after their graduations in 2022. Tate Besteman made the career rebounds list with 762 over 89 games, and EJ Suggitt made the career 3-pointers list with 215 over the same 89 contests. Besteman played this past season for Mid Michigan College, and Suggitt is playing baseball at Spring Arbor.
Success from 3-point range played a significant role in Mesick finishing 21-1 in 2021-22, as the team made 195 of its 578 attempts – with game highs of 15 twice in wins over Baldwin and Pentwater.
Then-senior Tristan McFolley earned the first listing under single-game rebounds since 2013 with 30 in Detroit Cesar Chavez Academy’s game with Hope of Detroit Academy on Dec. 8, 2022.
Tawas found its groove from long range Jan. 10 against Oscoda, drilling 22 3-pointers in an 86-31 win. The total tied for fifth-most in one game.
Although Norway felt just short, 40-37, in its District loss to Crystal Falls Forest Park on March 8, Alex Ortman kept the Knights close scoring 20 of his team-high 25 points in the fourth quarter to make the single-quarter scoring list. He’s now a senior.
Kobe Clark has listings in two MHSAA record books, with three for boys basketball joining those he earned for football during his Schoolcraft career. He was added in hoops for 531 career assists and 290 career steals over 94 games from 2016-17 through 2019-20, and also for 82 steals as a senior. Tyler DeGroote also was added to the record book, for scoring 20 points during the first quarter against Delton Kellogg during Schoolcraft’s Jan. 11, 2022, victory. Clark began at Saginaw Valley State for football and now plays basketball and Kalamazoo Valley Community College, and DeGroote is continuing at Rockhurst (Mo.).
Past Detroit Cooley star Larry Fogle has added a seventh record book listing a half-century later. Fogle grabbed 33 rebounds on Jan. 18, 1972, during a win over Detroit Mackenzie. He went on to play at Louisiana and Canisius, and then briefly with the New York Knicks.
Trevon Gunter scored 42 points in Kalamazoo Central’s 84-56 win over Richland Gull Lake on Jan. 17, 2020, including 31 during the third quarter – second-most and just one shy of the record for points during one period. A senior that season, Gunter plays currently at Grand Valley State.
Mark Wittbrodt held the record for consecutive free throws at 70 until 2008, and that entry in the record book has been joined by several others from the Bay City Western star. He was added for his 192 3-pointers, 436 free throws, .842 free-throw percentage and 266 career steals over three seasons from 1991-93, as well as for six single-season accomplishments. He went on to play at Michigan Tech.
Ellsworth’s Jacob Jenuwine tied for 12th on the single-game 3-pointers list when he connected on 11 as part of scoring 39 points total in his team’s Feb. 14 win over Alanson. Jenuwine graduated this spring.
Bellevue senior Dawson Wing capped his three-season varsity career last winter with three entries in the record. He was added for 12 blocked shots in a 2021-22 game against Colon, 107 for the season last winter and 203 blocks over his career. Teammate Caleb Betz, a senior this fall, was added for 12 steals in a game against Athens.
Logan Mansfield capped his Morenci career in a big way last winter. The senior drilled 90 3-pointers over 24 games to earn his school’s first individual record book entry in boys hoops since the 1987-88 season, when John Craig had 132 blocked shots that would have been the second-most recorded at that time. They currently rank 13th.
New Haven earned a pair of record book entries during its March 10 win over Memphis. The Rockets bested their previous single-quarter school record with 41 points during the opening period, and they also made the statewide single-game 3-pointers list with 16.
Whitehall’s Camden Thompson, a junior this fall, earned his first record book entry last winter – and the first for his school in boys basketball. He grabbed 303 rebounds over 21 games.
Grand Rapids Wellspring Prep junior Zeekeal Jackson earned his school's first boys basketball record book entry this past season as well. He made the single-season steals list with 106, over 22 games, and just missed the single-game list with a high of 10.
Jonesville’s Brady Wright was among his team’s leading scorers during his three varsity seasons ending this past winter, but he also was a major contributor defensively. He made the records with a season-high 101 steals over 25 games as a senior, and made the career list with 232 steals over 61 games.
Sophomore Christopher McLavish Jr. made a memorable impact last season with a pair of record book entries. He made the single-quarter points list with 20 in a Feb. 21 game against Flint Powers Catholic, but even more memorable were his 97 3-pointers over 25 games for the season – tying him for 11th all-time on that list.
PHOTO Foster Loyer directs Clarkston's offense during its 2018 Class A Semifinal.