Class A-B Preview: Recognizable Returns

March 18, 2015

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

Plenty of familiar uniforms will be running the Breslin Center floor during Friday’s Class A and B Semifinals.

Only one team is seeking its first championship game berth – the other seven semifinalists have a combined 25 MHSAA titles.

And the familiarity doesn’t end there. Reigning Class A champion Bloomfield Hills Marian is top-ranked and played No. 2 Detroit Martin Luther King to a one-point win only three weeks ago – and they meet in a Semifinal. Capital Area Activities Conference Red rivals DeWitt and Haslett don’t meet this weekend because they play in different classes – but are representing their league well after sharing its championship.

Saginaw Heritage has a player whose dad made national headlines on the Breslin court, and Benton Harbor has a star who will join the Spartans upon graduation. Goodrich and Detroit Country Day are both regulars at Finals weekend, and back after a short time away.  

All four Class A and B Semifinals will be played Friday, with all four championship games Saturday. 

Semifinals - Friday
Class A

DeWitt (24-1) vs Saginaw Heritage (24-3), 1 p.m.
Bloomfield Hills Marian (24-1) vs Detroit Martin Luther King (24-1), 2:50 p.m.

Class B
Benton Harbor (20-5) vs Haslett (21-5), 6 p.m.
Goodrich (25-1) vs Detroit Country Day (20-4), 7:50 p.m.

Finals - Saturday
Class A - Noon
Class B - 6 pm
Class C - 4 pm 
Class D - 10 am 

Tickets cost $8 per pair of Semifinals and $10 per two-game Finals session. All Semifinals will be streamed live on MHSAA.TV on a pay-per-view basis. All four Finals will be broadcast live on Fox Sports Detroit, the Class D, A and C title games on FOX Sports Detroit's primary channel and the Class B game on FOX Sports Detroit-PLUS. Free radio broadcasts of all weekend games will be available on

And now, a look at the semifinalists in Class A and B. Click on the name of the school to see that team’s full schedule and results from this season. (Statistics are through Regionals Finals.)

Class A

Record/rank: 24-1, No. 1.
League finish: First in Detroit Catholic League Central.
Coach: Mary Cicerone, 32nd season (584-194).
Championship history: Five MHSAA titles (most recent 2014), one runner-up finish.   
Best wins: 51-42 over No. 7 Waterford Kettering in the Quarterfinal, 49-33 (Regional Final), 65-28 and 54-32 over honorable mention Farmington Hills Mercy, 47-36 over No. 3 Southfield-Lathrup in the Regional Semifinal, 50-49 over No. 2 Detroit Martin Luther King. 68-41 over Benton Harbor, 56-26 over Class C No. 3 Ypsilanti Arbor Prep.
Players to watch: Brittany Gray, 5-11, sr. F (12 ppg, 4.9 rpg); Samantha Thomas, 6-0 soph. G (11.4 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 3.2 apg, 2.4 spg).
Outlook: Marian is the favorite to repeat after last season winning its first championship since 1998. The Mustangs are 67-7 over the last three seasons and lost this winter only to Chicago Whitney Young, by four points. Senior guard Kara Holinski (9.7 ppg, 3.3 apg) and junior guard Bailey Thomas (7.4 ppg, 3.7 apg, 3.1 spg) joined Gray and Thomas starting in last season’s Final, and senior guard Jaeda Robinson played the most minutes off the bench and adds another 7.4 points per game to the starting lineup. 

Record/rank: 24-1, No. 2.
League finish: First in Detroit Public School League East.
Coach: William Winfield, 33rd season (687-55).
Championship history: Five MHSAA titles (most recent 2006), six runner-up finishes.
Best wins: 43-36 over No. 9 Grosse Pointe South in the Regional Semifinal, 43-36 (District Final), 66-53 and 53-49 over Detroit Cass Tech, 49-35 (Quarterfinal) and 68-34 over Romulus.
Players to watch: Janae Williams, 5-8 sr. G (15.7 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.3 spg); Malaysia McHenry, 6-3 F/C, sr. (10 ppg, 12 rpg, 2.1 bpg).
Outlook: King is making its first trip to Finals weekend since 2006 but hasn’t won fewer than 22 games since 2002 or lost more than one in a season since 2010. The lone loss this winter was to top-ranked Marian, by a point, making their rematch Friday the must-see game of the Semifinal round. No team left has as much size as the Crusaders; McHenry is joined in the starting lineup by 6-3 senior Leah Mathis, with 6-2 junior Jasmine Flowers filling in off the bench. Sophomore guard Alicia Norman adds 11.4 points per game. Williams has signed with Division I Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis. 

Record/rank: 24-1, No. 4.
League finish: Tied for first in Capital Area Activities Conference Red.
Coach: Bill McCullen, 19th season (357-78).
Championship history: Class C champion 1977.
Best wins: 48-43 OT over No. 5 Ann Arbor Huron in the Regional Semifinal, 65-53 over Kalamazoo Central in the Regional Final, 53-38 (District Final), 62-48 and 54-51 over Lansing Waverly, 51-47 over Class B No. 8 Haslett.
Players to watch: Claudia Reid, 5-7 sr. G (10.3 ppg, 6.5 apg, 2.6 spg); Abby Nakfoor, 5-10 sr. F (12 ppg, 5.3 rpg).
Outlook: A three-time Class B semifinalist (most recently in 2009), DeWitt moved up to Class A for 2011-12 and has this winter tallied the third-most wins of McCullen’s successful tenure. Reid is a four-year varsity point guard and with Nakfoor is joined by two more seniors in the starting lineup in guards Cayce Palmer and Maria Moss, with junior 5-10 center Lilly George the team’s third leading scorer at 8.2 ppg. 

Record/rank: 24-3, honorable mention.
League finish: Second in Saginaw Valley Association North.
Coach: Vonnie DeLong, second season (38-8).
Championship history: Class A champion 2002, runner-up 2001.
Best wins: 39-31 over No. 10 Flushing in the Regional Final, 50-31 over No. 7 Marquette in the Regional Semifinal, 52-38 (District Final) and 49-39 over No. 6 Midland Dow.
Players to watch: Allie Miller, 5-7 sr. G (9.6 ppg, 4.7 apg, 3.4 spg); Jaela Richardson, 6-0 fr. F (8.5 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 1.4 bpg).
Outlook: Heritage has stormed through the postseason, beating Dow after finishing second to the Chargers in league play and then downing Flushing after falling to the Raiders in overtime Feb. 24. No player averages in double figures scoring, but six score at least six points per game and four players grab at least four rebounds per. Richardson, the daughter of Philadelphia 76ers guard Jason, surely will carry some intrigue as she plays on her dad’s former college home floor. 

Class B

Record/rank: 20-5, honorable mention.
League finish: Second in Southwestern Michigan Athletic Conference West.
Coach: Lisa Harvey-Gondrezick, fifth season (69-46).
Championship history: Class A champion 2009, Class A runner-up 1984.
Best wins: 50-47 over No. 10 Plainwell in the Regional Final, 56-53 over Class A honorable mention Stevensville Lakeshore, 90-79 over Kalamazoo Central.
Players to watch: Kalabrya Gondrezick, 5-8 sr. G (17.9 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 8.1 apg, 2.8 spg, 1.1 bpg); Kysre Gondrezick, 5-9 jr. G (27.5 ppg, 10.6 rpg, 5.4 apg, 3.6 spg).
Outlook: Benton Harbor has steadily improved in five seasons under Harvey-Gondrezick, a former Benton Harbor standout, and has won 13 straight heading into this weekend. Her daughters are stars now; Kalabrya was a Miss Basketball finalist and will play at Michigan State, while Kysre is the team's leading scorer and rebounder and only a junior. Senior guard Dennee Brown adds 10.1 points and 1.2 blocks per game, and 6-1 senior center Gabrielle Dortch is one of two players 6-0 or taller in the playing group; she averages 9.8 points, 11.2 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. 

Record/rank: 20-4, No. 6.
League finish: Does not play in a league.
Coach: Frank Orlando, 34th season (710-110).
Championship history: Ten MHSAA titles (most recent 2009), four runner-up finishes.
Best wins: 47-39 over honorable mention Dearborn Divine Child in the Quarterfinal, 57-43 over No. 8 Haslett, 72-36 over Class C No. 5 Flint Hamady, 59-52 over Class C No. 10 Saginaw Nouvel.
Players to watch: Destiny Pitts, 5-10 soph. F (15.2 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 2.8 apg, 45 3-pointers); Kaela Webb, 5-6 fr. G (7.8 ppg, 2.1 apg, 2.1 spg, 28 3-pointers).
Outlook: Country Day has won 18 straight Regional titles but is making its first Semifinal appearance since 2010 – although this lineup seems to indicate a return to Breslin regular. Although the Yellowjackets start two seniors, they are the only seniors on the team, and there are seven underclassmen including 6-3 starting sophomore center Tylar Bennett. The losses came to three strong Class A teams and Class C contender Ypsilanti Arbor Prep. 

Record/rank: 25-1, No. 2.
League finish: First in Genesee Area Conference Red.
Coach: Jason Gray, 17th season (340-45).
Championship history: Class B champion 2013 and 2012.   
Best wins: 57-40 over No. 7 Manistee in the Quarterfinal, 55-43 over No. 8 Haslett, 45-41 over No. 9 Frankenmuth in the Regional Semifinal, 50-48 over No. 1 Midland Bullock Creek in the Regional Final.
Players to watch: Tania Davis, 5-5 sr. G (19.1 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 5.7 apg, 2.9 spg ); Alexis Sevillian, 5-7 jr. G (15.6 ppg, 2.2 apg, 2.4 spg).
Outlook: Not that it required justification, but Goodrich has more than proved why it belongs back at Breslin and as the likely favorite. The Martians eliminated three top-10 teams and handed Bullock Creek and its trio of 1,000-point scorers its only loss this season. Davis was named Miss Basketball on Monday and teams with Sevillian for a dominating backcourt. Senior Isabella O’Brien provides plenty of presence to complement the star guards down low; she’s 6-2 and averages 9.4 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. 

Record/rank: 21-5, No. 8.
League finish: Tied for first in the Capital Area Activities Conference Red.
Coach: Bob Currier, sixth season (102-38).
Championship history: Has never played in an MHSAA Final.  
Best wins: 48-38 over No. 3 Grand Rapids Catholic Central in the Quarterfinal, 63-56 over No. 4 Wayland in the Regional Final, 53-43 over No. 5 Williamston in the District opener, 55-44 over No. 4 DeWitt.
Players to watch: Makenna Ott, 5-10 sr. F (13.2 ppg, 5.4 rpg); Karson Tripp, 6-0 jr.  F (11.6 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 2.1 apg, 2.5 spg, 1.4 bpg).
Outlook: The Vikings are one of the most intriguing stories this weekend; they made the Regional Finals in Class A last season, then moved to Class B with a senior-dominated lineup and high expectations but worked through a tough stretch midseason with Ott out with an injury. She’s back and the team has knocked off three top-five teams during the last three weeks. Ott and Tripp are the leading scorers, but hardly the only key contributors. Senior guard Kenzie DeCook averages 11.5 points per game and had 34 3-pointers entering the week, while senior guard Adrianna Stolicker is a captain with Ott and averages 10.3 ppg.

PHOTO: DeWitt guard Maria Moss goes up for a shot in the Panthers’ Quarterfinal win over Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central on Tuesday. (Photo courtesy of tcp-photography.)

St. George's Senior Season Filled with Historic Trip, Sizzling 3-Point Shooting

By Geoff Kimmerly senior editor

May 21, 2024

Delaney St. George helped Kingston reach its first MHSAA Girls Basketball Final this winter – and along the way finished her high school career among the most prolific 3-point shooters in state history.

The four-year varsity senior made 87 3-pointers this season for the Division 4 runner-up Cardinals, good to tie for 10th on the single-season list after she made 93 as a junior to rank fourth all-time.

She finished her Kingston career with 290 3-pointers in 793 attempts over 94 games – good for second on the career 3-pointers list.

See below for more recent additions to the MHSAA girls basketball record book, and click on the heading to see the record book in full.

Girls Basketball

Hemlock’s 18-6 run this season was fueled in part by more successful 3-point shooting. The Huskies made single-season lists with 170 3-pointers and 552 attempts, and also for making 14 3-pointers Jan. 5 against St. Louis.

Senior Mia McLaughlin made nine of 15 3-point shots for Frankenmuth in a Feb. 6 win over Birch Run as the Eagles made the team record book list with 15 3-pointers total. They also were added for 14 3-pointers in a Feb. 20 win over Bay City John Glenn. McLaughlin will continue her career at Ferris State.

McBain sophomore Peyton Grant scored all 27 of her points Jan. 17 against Houghton Lake on nine 3-pointers to make the single-game list in that category.

Seniors Autumn Tremblay and Ceara LeBlanc earned Brimley’s first girls basketball record book listings this season. Both made single-game lists in a Feb. 27 win over Harbor Springs Harbor Light Christian – Tremblay scored 21 points during the first quarter and LeBlanc had 16 steals for the game – and LeBlanc also was added for 141 steals total over 25 games this past winter.

Reed City’s run at the Central State Activities Association title this winter was fueled in part by 3-point shooting. The Coyotes finished one game out of first, but made the records with 517 3-point attempts over 24 games – and just missed the made 3-pointers list connecting on 143.

Howell sophomore Gabrielle Piepho added her third record book listing over her first two seasons this winter making 89.2 percent of her free throw attempts to rank eighth on that single-season list. Howell as a team also made the 3-point attempts list with 536 over 25 games, and also just missed the 3-pointers made list with 146.

Saline finished the 2023-24 season among the all-time leading 3-point shooters again, this time with 192 – 14th-most for one season – in 587 attempts over 24 games. Sophomore Keira Roehm led the way with 78 3-pointers, tying for 21st on that list.

Junior Tamerah Peterson led Sterling Heights Parkway Christian to a District title this season, providing a record-setting defensive boost in addition to her offensive skills. She finished with 173 steals – eighth-most for one season – over 21 games.

Niles Brandywine reached Breslin Center this season with another stellar distance shooting display, making the record book with both 186 3-pointers and 610 attempts from beyond the arc in finishing Division 3 runner-up.

Alie Bisballe capped her career at Lake City this winter by helping her team reach the Division 3 Semifinal at Breslin Center – and by reaching the MHSAA girls basketball record book in two categories. The 6-foot-4 post player made the lists with 329 rebounds and 188 blocked shots, both in 28 games as Lake City finished 25-3. She will continue her career at Wisconsin.

Ironwood junior Hanna Vaughn will enter her final season next winter already on the career 3-pointers list. She’s made 155 3-pointers over her first three seasons and 70 games on varsity.

PHOTO Kingston’s Delaney St. George (10) pulls up for a shot during the Division 4 Final against Ishpeming.