Class A Regional Playoff Preview

16 Mar

The state’s biggest class is the most open.

Contenders remaining: Western (21-0), Muskegon (21-1), Clarkston (22-0), Kalamazoo Central (22-1), Macomb Dakota (20-2), U of D Jesuit (19-3), Saginaw Arthur Hill (20-3)

Sleepers remaining: Lansing Everett (21-2), Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central (23-0), Ann Arbor Huron (20-2), Romulus (17-5), East English Village (16-4), North Farmington (19-3).

Best Regionals:

Holland West Ottawa

Teams: Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central, Muskegon, Grand Rapids Ottawa Hills, Hudsonville

Outlook: The defending Class A champs meet Forest Hills Central Monday night.  Forest Hills might have the undefeated record, but Muskegon has future Michigan State Spartan and Mr. Basketball candidate Deyonta Davis.  Davis’ Big Reds haven’t lost in over two months, December 30th to be exact.  This should be a nice match-up between Davis and 2017 stud forward Xavier Tillman for Central.

A sleeper in this regional is Ottawa Hills.  The Bengals slayed previously unbeaten East Kentwood in the district title.  Ottawa Hills’ strength is guards, with Ojani Echevarria, Lance Clanton, and Anthony McIntosh.  OH prefers an up-temp run-and-gun style of play.

Troy

Teams: Macomb Dakota, Clarkston, Auburn Hills Avondale, Utica Eisenhower

Outlook: The two favorites in the Troy Regional are Clarkston and Dakota.  Clarkston is a well-oiled machine that has not lost a game the entire year.  While Dakota has not lost since the second week of the season, a 15 point defeat to Clarkston.  Dakota found their stride in January, when Mt. Clemens transfers Charles Penn and Jermaine Jackson Jr. were granted eligibility.  A third transfer, forward Tarriq Jones, also from Mt. Clemens, has found his role in the Cougar game plan as well following a return to Michigan in the second semester.

As for the other two teams, Eisenhower lost twice to Dakota, one by two points.  Avondale plays Clarkston on Monday, a rematch from December 12th, a 38 point dissmaintling by the Wolves.  However, Avondale has not loss since late January, and tied West Bloomfield for a share of the OAA White.

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