Detroit Community Holds Off Arbor Prep 63-56

31 Jan

photo-5It’s an opportunity Detroit Community senior point guard Kyrhal Hunt has been waiting for the last two weeks.  A chance to play.

Hunt sustained an injury in Community’s 61-57 loss to Metro League rival River Rouge on January 14th.  In Hunt’s absence, the Hurricanes went 2-1, but suffered a crushing setback to Detroit Edison on Wednesday.

Fueled by a desire to reunite with his teammates, Hunt had to prove to himself, and even his coaches, he was able to play at a high level in the Hurricanes’ victory against Ypsilanti Arbor Prep.

“My coach thought I wasn’t ready to play yet,” Hunt said.  “I just tried to prove to my coach that I was ready to get back on the court and lead my team to a win.”

Hunt, came off the bench, and made his presence known later in the game.

In the first half, threes were flying for both teams.  Community had five, and Arbor Prep had four within the first six minutes for their opening 12 points.  However, Community was able to build a commanding 39-28 lead at intermission on the play of 6’6″ forward Demario Mack.  Mack, a versatile inside-outside presence, scored 14 in the opening half of action, and recorded 5 rebounds.

“Demario Mack is a huge piece to our team,” Hunt added.  “He’s a beast on the glass.”

The Hurricane onslaught continued in the early second half.  Dominating the paint and getting a hand on loose balls and every rebound, Community would hold their largest lead of the contest with 3:44 left in the third at 45-30.  Yet, it would happen again.  Hunt would take an awkward fall after a foul, and left the game late in the third with an apparent calf injury.

Hunt and Community’s resilience would once again be tested.  Arbor Prep mounted a comeback spanning from the beginning of the fourth to 6:20 left to put the Gators down six.  Hunt would return and hit two crucial pull up jump shots to keep the Gators at bay down eight with 4:54 remaining.  Arbor Prep would keep the deficit under ten for the rest of the fourth.  Senior guard Adrian Harrison would connect on two threes to place Arbor Prep down 55-52 with 1:58 left in the game.

It would be Community’s turn to respond.  At 1:35, Hunt held the ball at the top of the key, he attempted to throw a pass, unfortunately the ball was deflected and Hunt was forced to retrieve the ball in the Community backcourt.  On this potentially disastrous play, Arbor Prep would’ve had the ball down only three.  However, Hunt found the ball, and threw and perfect full-court pass to teammate RJ Smith for an and-one layup to place Community up six with 1:18 left.

Arbor Prep was unable to respond to the game changing play by Hunt. Demario Mack and Jimere Thomas would hit four free-throws with under a minute away to seal the win for Community.

“We played hard and as a team.” Hunt went onto say. “They were making some big shots.  We just got back on defense and played hard.”

“I wouldn’t trade my team for anything.”

Mack would lead Community with 17 points and nine rebounds, Hunt added 11 points, five in the second half, and three assists, and Demario Turner contributed ten points.

Michael Donatelli led Arbor Prep with 17 points and six rebounds, and Adrian Harrison scored 14 points and three assists.

Community improves to 10-3, while Arbor Prep falls to 7-6.  The performance for Community is what Hunt would label a “team win.”  But Hunt would also say the Hurricanes aren’t flawless.  Kyrhal said the team needs to avoid lapses on offense, and limit turnovers.  The Hurricanes are only two years removed from playing for a Class B state championship, and Hunt believes his team has the opportunity to compete for hardware again.

“We have all the pieces to win a state championship in class B.”  “We have alot of things we need to work on, and that’s going to be expected.”

“We also like being the under dogs, that make us work harder.”

 

 

 

 

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