Archive | December, 2015

Mayor’s Notebook: Fastbreak Invitational Recap

23 Dec

Special thanks to T.J. Kelley and Belleville High School.  They combined to host Saturday’s Fastbreak Invitational which was a feast for basketball lovers from around the area.

Game 1 Lenawee Christian 47 Armada 42

Game 2 Arbor Prep 70 Melvindale ABT 49

Arbor Prep came out firing and built a 46-20 halftime lead.  Unsigned 6’7″ senior big man Kyle Hayes scored 20 en route to AP’s fourth win on the young season.  It was a good win with Milan transfer Garrett Gardette still ineligible for a couple of more games.

Game 3 Onsted 65 Riverview Gabriel Richard 32

When 6-11 Austin “Big Country” Davis comes down on the Onsted’s first possession and makes a three from the top of the key, it means that the opponent is in for a long day.  The Michigan commit had 24 points, 15 rebounds, and five blocks while junior front-court mate Skyler Lipinski added 16 points.  Riverview Richard was led by Tim Augustyniak with 11 points, while Anthony “Flo” Brown chipped in with 9.
Game 4 Ann Arbor Huron 68 Southfield Lathrup 44

It was a close game until Huron went on a 23-8 run to close the game helping the River Rats get the victory.  The Rats are not as individually talented as in years past, but play hard, and are well coached.
Game 5 Belleville 70 Oak park 57

Belleville opened up a 16-4 lead to end the first quarter then went into the half up 12.  The Tiger attack was led by Calvin Blaydes.  He displayed an improved touch from the perimeter as he hit four three pointers on his way to 21 points.  Oak Park made a run late behind point guard Trevon Gardner’s 18 points.  However, Belleville’s depth was too much for the Knights to withstand in the end. Super sophomore guard Davion Williams added 17 points and 8 rebounds, and Karme Carey added 11 for the Tigers.

Mayor’s Notebook: Breaking Down the Winter Breakout

16 Dec

T.J. Kelley recently hosted the fourth annual Winter Breakout.  As usual at a IPS event, there was plenty of talent on display.

Game One Wayne Memorial 57 Howell 47

Game Two Grand Rapids Union 53 Detroit Loyola 52

This was a quality game.  Union jumped out early behind senior Bruce Burstra (11pts) and junior Jared Sietsema.  However, the Bulldogs came back to take a one point lead at the end of the third, behind senior combo guard Dequan Powell’s 11 points.  Down one, Loyola’s sophomore point guard and CMU commit Perrie Mitchell  missed a driving lay-up attempt with time expiring to give Union the win.

Game Three New Haven 64 Yspilanti Lincoln 46.

This was New Haven’s freshman Romero Weems’ coming out party.  As New Haven showed they will be a top contender in Class B.  Weems had 17 points, eight rebounds, and two blocks in New Haven’s dominating win.

Ty Groce paced the Rail Splitters with 15 points, 5 assists, and 6 rebounds.

Game Four Ann Arbor Pioneer 72 Conerstone 57

This game was nip-and-tuck through three quarters.  Then the Pioneers pulled away late.  Cedric Benton had 19 points, fellow junior guard Deric Murray also played solid for the Pioneers.  Freshman Drew Louder was impressive as well.  Pioneer moved to 2-0 on the season as they defeated Ann Arbor Skyline in overtime the night before.

Conerstone’s junior Jamal Cain showed why he is a top three prospect in the 2017 class by putting up 16 points, and 13 rebounds for the Wolves.

Mayor’s Pre-season Class D Rankings

7 Dec

1. Lenawee

2. Our Lady of the Lakes

3. Powers North Central

4. Inter-City Baptist

5. Tri-Unity Christian

Mayor’s Pre-season Class A Rankings

7 Dec


The state’s most competitive division will be one to watch.

1. U of D Jesuit- The third time could be the charm for the Cubs, as U of D has ended their season in the state semi-finals the previous two years.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard Cassius Winston, 6’9″ junior forward Ike Eke, 6’8″ junior forward Greg Eboigboden, 6’0″ sophomore guard Elijah Collins, 5’9″ freshman guard Julian Dozier

2. Detroit Western– Western will have their whole team from day one this season.  The Cowboy backcourt will be the team’s strength, with the ability to apply pressure defense, and make perimeter shots.

Key players- 5’10” senior guard Brailen Neely, 6’0″ senior guard Armani Tinsley, 6’2″ senior guard Karim Murray, 6’6″ junior forward Josh Long, 6’5″ junior forward Demoines Whitney

3. Detroit East English Village- On paper one of the deepest teams in the state having played together both during the high school and travel seasons.  But must execute as a cohesive unit to reach potential.

Key players- 6’3″ senior guard Karmari Newman, 6’5″ senior forward Cedric Lattimore, 6’4″ senior forward Jaylin McFadden, 5’11” senior guard Chris Rollins, 6’4″ senior wing Lamar Neely, 6’7″ senior forward Joe Barron, 5’10” senior guard Nate Bowlware, 6’3″ junior guard Greg Elliott

4. Macomb Dakota- Have the size, smarts, and guards to make a run for Class A.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard C.J. Marshall, 5’8″ junior guard Jermaine Jackson Jr., 6’6″ junior forward Braeden Sackely, 6’7″ sophomore forward Thomas Kithier.

5. Clarkston– That team from up north always finds ways to win.

Key players- 6’4″ senior guard Tabin Throgmorton, 6’4″ junior wing Dylan Alderson, 5’10” sophomore guard Foster Loyer.

6. Grand Rapids Christian– With two transfer forwards GRC is suddenly a player in Class A, will need a point guard to develop.

Key players- 6’7″ junior forward Xavier Tillman, 6’6″ junior forward James Beck.

7. Detroit Renaissance– All the pieces in play to make a run for city and state crowns.

Key players- 6’3″ senior guard Justin Turner, 6’6″ senior forward A.J. Jackson, 5’10” senior guard Richard Talley, 6’4″ junior guard LaRhonde Lucas, 6’5″ sophomore forward Jalen Tobias.

8. Lansing Everett- Gone is Trevor Manuel, but three standout guards will lead Everett to many victories this season.

Key players- 6’4″ senior guard JaMyrin Jackson, 6’1″ senior guard LeAndre Wright, 5’10” junior guard Nyrell Powell.

9. Kalamazoo Central– Despite losing their best player via prep school, the Maroon Giants have the talent to remain top dogs in Southwest Michigan.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard Jeremiah Richard, 6’7″ junior forward Isaiah Livers, 6’5″ junior forward Rog Stein, 6’4″ junior guard Ontario Burnett.

10. East Kentwood- The Falcons put together a perfect regular season, and return a balanced group of seniors at every position.

Key players- 6’7″ senior forward Andrew Madison, 6’2″ senior guard Micah Rosser, 6’2″ senior guard Brandon Fuller.

11. North Farmington- Billy T will be eligible for the whole year this season, and he has help on the way with a transfer from Michigan and Georgia.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard Billy Thomas, 6’2″ senior guard Obi Duru, 6’3″ senior guard Alex Darden, 5’10” senior guard Josh Hogans, 6’3″ junior guard Amauri Harden, 6’6″ forward Nate Brooks.

12. Belleville- Could easily be mistaken for a J.V. with the amount of youth the Tigers have.  Their game, however, is varsity approved.

Key players- 6’5″ senior forward Calvin Blaydes, 6’6″ senior forward Trevor Molinda, 6’3″ sophomore guard Davion Williams, 6’2″ sophomore guard Kmari Carey, 6’2″ sophomore wing Devin Alverson.

13. Romulus- Not the most talented of Romulus teams, but will compete.

Key players- 6’3″ senior guard Rahsaan Pope, 6’7″ senior forward Trey Carter, 6’0″ senior guard D’Angelo Hansbro, 5’10” senior guard Sevann Williams, 6’2″ senior guard Khari Williams, 6’0″ sophomore guard Kaevon Merriweather, 6’0″ sophomore guard Rashaad Williams.

14. Ypsilanti– The Grizzlies lack size, but Coach Brooks’ team will guard the length of the floor.

Key players- 6’2″ senior guard Corey Allen, 6’1″ senior guard Rayjon Williams-Jackson, 5’10” junior guard Marlin Talley, 5’11” junior guard James Davis, 6’5″ sophomore forward Josh Perkins.

15. Muskegon- No big names this year for Muskegon, but the Big Reds will find ways to win games with players having to take on different roles.

Key players- senior guard 5’10” Michael Littlejohn, 6’0″ senior guard Linwood Lee, 6’5″ junior forward Anthony Bethea.



Mayor’s Pre-season Class B Rankings

7 Dec


Class B is wide-open for the taking this year.

1. Wyoming Godwin Heights- The champs will be favored once again to repeat with a mixture of veterans and talented youth.

Key players- 6’2″ senior guard Richard Major, 6’0″ senior guard Leon Redd, 5’10” junior point guard Christian Rodriguez, 6’5″ sophomore forward Markeese Hastings, 5’10” sophomore point guard Susu Davenport, 5’11” sophomore point guard Peyton Harley, 6’1″ sophomore guard Lamar Norman.

2. New Haven- Lost just one game a season ago, and return the two tallest players in the class.

Key Players- 6’10” senior forward Innocent Nwyoko, 6’10” senior forward Jerry Ben, 6’3″ junior guard Eric Williams, 6’5″ freshman wing Romeo Weems.

3. River Rouge- The Panthers returned to prominence last season, but lose four starters from a 19 win team a year ago.

Key players- 6’6″ senior forward Javon Lawrence, 6’2″ senior guard Dorian Watson, 6’0″ junior point Darian Owens-White, 6’3″ junior wing Delonte Peterson

4. Benton Harbor- This will be the last go-around for one of the best backcourt combinations in the state.

Key players- 6’3″ senior guard Jaton Gunn, 6’0″ senior guard Curtis Dawson, 6’1″ junior guard Roy Anderson.

5. Detroit Consortium- The Cougars are always a tough out regardless of who is on their roster.

Key players- 6’1″ senior guard Luster Johnson, 6’5″ senior forward Jaylen Moore, 6’4″ senior forward Jaylen Sykes, 5’10” senior guard C.J. Figueroa.

6. Onsted- Game plan for the Bulldogs all year should be feed the post.

Key players- 6’10” senior forward Austin Davis, 6’7″ junior forward Sylar Lipinski.

7. Detroit Osborn- Osborn has dominated the division II portion of the PSL in recent years, the Knights make the jump to division I this year to see how good they really are.

Key players- 6’7″ senior forward Devin Dubois, 6’0″ junior guard Armonee Felder, 5’11” sophomore guard Jamarria Hall

8. Hazel Park- Talented youth make the Vikings a player in Class B.

Key players- 6’7″ senior forward James Jenkins, 5’11” junior guard Cam Boatman, 6’1″ sophomore guard Carl Bow, 6’0″ sophomore guard Dave Hearns

9. Alma- Feed the big!

Key players- 6’9″ senior guard Dylan Carl

10. Stevenvsille-Lakeshore- Feed the big!

Key players- 6’10” senior forward Braden Burke.

11. Detroit Northwestern- A productive month of June team camps should propel the Colts to take their play a level higher.

Key played- 6’2″ senior guard Terrance Sewell, 5’10” junior guard Kylard Ship

12. Detroit Henry Ford- After a historic run to the Breslin Center, the Trojans must replace four starters and a healthy amount of role players.  Hustle and grit will be the formula for Ford to win games.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard James Towns, 6’3″ senior forward Alston Hunter, 6’2″ senior guard Jeremy Crawley, 5’10” senior guard Angelo Walker, 6’0″ sophomore guard Damon Gilmore.

13. Wayland Union- An inside and outside presence will be tough for opponents to stop this season.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard Avery Hudson, 6’7″ junior forward Zack Nieukwoop

14. Flint Southwestern– Michigan is eagerly awaiting for a Flint team from Michigan to return to respectability.  Will the Knights be this year’s team?

Key players- 6’1″ senior guard Tevin Taylor, 5’7″ senior guard DeShaun Pride.

15. Williamston- Return six seniors from a 17 win team and gain a top freshman in the state.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard Riley Lewis, 6’5″ freshman forward Sean Cobb.


Mayor’s Pre-season Class C Rankings

1 Dec

Beecher reigned supreme in 2015.

Beecher reigned supreme in 2015.

Will Beecher make it four in five years?  Or will the Bucs be de-throned from Class C supremacy?

1. Beecher– By far Class C’s most dominant team in the past four years with three state crowns.  Despite the Bucs’ dominance in Class C, Beecher has proved able to take-down larger schools.  Only preparing them for the real season of March.

Key players: 5’7″ junior point guard Malik Ellison, 5’10” junior point guard Jordan Roland, 6’7″ junior forward Levane Blake, 6’4″ senior forward Qua Burks.

2. Monroe St. Mary- St. Mary now transitions to life without Bryce Windham.  The Falcons fell one game short of the Breslin Center appearance one season ago, but have the talent and road map to reach the final weekend of the season.

Key players- 6’4″ senior wing Stephan Umfress, 6’7″ junior forward Nick Welch, 6’6″ sophomore forward Wyatt O’Brian, 6’2″ senior guard Hunter Coombe, 6’1″ senior guard Drew Sconochia, 6’3″ senior guard Bradley Shinnevarre.

3. Detroit Allen Academy- Talent is not the question, but must gel as a cohesive unit, particularly on the defensive end of the floor.  Combination of both size and speed makes the Wildcats tough to contain.

Key players- 6’0″ senior guard Jason Williams, 6’8″ senior forward Danny Pippen, 6’5″ senior forward Jayvaun Flake, 6’2″ junior guard Drequan Bell, 6’3″ junior guard Jawan Snoody, 5’10” freshman point guard Mark Watts.

4. Detroit Loyola- P.J. Mitchell was able to ease into his high school career a season ago behind a solid group of senior leaders.  This year will be the Mitchell show, and the Bulldogs will go as far as the Central Michigan commit takes them.

Key players- 5’10” senior combo guard Dequan Powell, 5’11” senior guard Romari Ennis 6’0″ junior forward Jaylen Hill, 5’8″ sophomore point guard Dequan Powell, 6’2″ sophomore forward Keith Johnson.

5. Southfield Christian- The Eagles adjusted to Class C after a three year reign in Class D.  Backcourt, check.  Bigs, not so much.

Key players- 6’4″ senior wing Marlo Brown, 5’8″ senior guard Jalen Bouldes, 5’11” senior guard Richard Faegin, 6’4″ junior wing Brock Washington, 6’3″ junior wing Trenton Temple, 6’4″ sophomore wing Bryce Washington.

6. Detroit Edison- Edison exceeded expectation one season ago winning a district championship.  Despite just one experienced senior on the roster, the Pioneers are a mixture of talented youth, and accepting role players.

Key players- 5’9″ senior guard KaLeif Gaines, 6’7″ junior forward Will Weems, 6’3″ junior guard Jamal Keese, 6’6″ sophomore forward Deante Johnson, 6’2″ sophomore point guard David DeJulius, 6’5″ freshman forward Dreyon O’Neil..

7. Detroit Cornerstone- The Wolves will be state playoff eligible this season.  Led by a top 100 junior prospect in the nation, Cornerstone is yet another Detroit team with a realistic possibility to play at the Breslin Center.

Key players- 5’10” senior point guard James Burton, 6’3″ senior forward Deijoun Ingram-Lawrence, 6’0″ junior guard Davion Bradford, 6’6″ junior forward Jamal Cain, 6’5″ junior forward Ethan Dixon.

8. Ypsilanti Arbor Prep– New coach Cliff Davis inherits an experienced district championship team.  With size, depth, and transfers on the way, the Gators are a force to be taken seriously this Winter.

Key players- 6’8″ senior forward Kyle Hayes, 6’7″ senior forward David Walker, 6’2″ senior guard Adrian Harrison, 6’0″ junior guard Kody Freeman, 5’10” junior point guard Garrett Gardette.

9. Detroit Pershing– Pershing has five state champions, none of which are from Class C.  The Doughboys will be tested through the gauntlet which is the Detroit Public Schools League, only then readied for a district with four teams in the pre-season top ten.

Key players- 6’6″ senior forward David Syfax, 6’7″ senior forward Charles Manson, 5’10” senior guard Troy Campbell, 6’0″ junior guard Patrick Hatcher, 6’0″ sophomore combo guard Ron Hill.

10. Hanover-Horton- Despite a crushing defeat to eventually champion Beecher in the semi-finals, Horton won 25 games, and will be a force in the southern portion of Michigan.

Key players- 6’5″ senior forward Preston Laketa.

11. NorthPointe Christian- Lost a significant portion of scoring, rebounding, and leadership due to graduation, but someone has to represent the westside of the state.

Key players- 6’5″ senior guard Tyler Baker

12. Muskegon Heights- Overshadowed by the large Class A Muskegon, Muskegon Heights has been a respectable program since the turn of the century.  Although the Tigers failed to capture a district championship last season for the first time since 1999, Heights usually one way or not finds themselves in contention for a spot at the Breslin Center come March.

Key players- 6’5″ sophomore forward Keishon Watson.

13. Ferndale University- The Eagles have no household names, but won 14 games a campaign ago.  Backcourt will be strength led by two veteran guards.

Key players- 6’9″ senior forward Chemar Greenfield, 6’3″ senior point guard Gehringer Ramirez, 6’1″ combo guard Justin Penn.

14. Melvindale ABT- Despite an average record, the Gators still managed a district championship.

Key players- 6’6″ junior forward Elijah Smith.

15. Riverview Gabriel Richard- The Pioneers are favored to win the C-D division in the Catholic League, with the possibility for more in March.

Key players- 6’4″ senior forward Jake Lipetzky, 6’0″ junior point guard Anthony Brown.



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