Tag Archives: Detroit Western

Western Tops East English In PSL Showdown 78-71

24 Jan

Basketball is a game of runs, such was the case when the Western Cowboys and EEVPA Bulldogs squared off on Friday afternoon. Both teams came into the game playing high-level basketball, and each would get significantly better before the game tipped off.

Every year transfer students shake up the basketball landscape. This game featured three of them who all made a huge impact in the game.

For Western, Josh McFolley and Gerald Blackshear both made their season debuts. McFolley struggled in the early going starting the game 0-6 from the field, but his teammates picked it up as Western led 16-15 after one.

The second quarter involved fast paced basketball, and several lead changes. However, EEVPA was able to pull away towards the end of the quarter behind multiple three pointers from guards Kamari Newman and Greg Elliot. The Bulldogs went into the half with a 38-30 lead.

Kamari Newman came out of the locker room with a scoring mindset, as he hit a triple and extended EEVPA’s lead to 13. Despite being down 13 points, Western stuck with it and kept fighting.

“Coach told us we have to slow the game down and take it one possession at a time,” senior Aaron Austin said.

That is exactly what the Cowboys did, chipping away at the Bulldog lead. Their run was sparked behind spectacular three point shooting from Josh McFolley. McFolley made three triples, all of which were from about NBA range.

EEVPA kept battling with Western matching them point for point.  Until the end of the third quarter when the Cowboys were able to grab the 52-21 lead.

Both teams matched each other until Greg Elliot hit a triple from the corner to give EEVPA the 58-57 lead with about six minutes remaining in the game, Western called a timeout. After the time out, Western took the lead and never looked back.  EEVPA would keep it close, but excellent free throw shooting down the stretch from the Cowboys iced the game, and gave them the 78-71 victory.

Josh McFolley scored 21 points. Fellow seniors Gerald Blackshear, and Aaron Austin added superb performances. Blackshear had 14 points and 14 rebounds in his debut, and Austin added 16 points, and stellar defense on Kamari Newman.

“From the time that we walked into the gym, all that was on my mind was guarding Kamari,” Austin added.

For EEVPA, Kamari Newman had 19 points and seven rebounds, while Greg Elliot and Jaylin McFadden added 14 points each.

Both of these teams are expected to make deep runs in the state tournament this March, and each has the firepower to win a state championship.

Contributed by Christian Crittenden (@chris_critt)

Five Key Transfers Across Metro Detroit

19 Jan

The day after Martin Luther King Junior Day, all transfer students who sat out the first semester are eligible for competition.  For some teams, the added personnel can mean the difference between a district playoff loss and a Breslin Center appearance.  Here are five teams who will change for the better this second half of the season.

Detroit Western– The Cowboys sit undefeated at 8-0 overall, with statement wins against Romulus and Saginaw Arthur Hill.  Junior point guard Brailen Neely has blossomed into one of the premier guards not just in the city, but state as well.  Neely is complimented by classmates in guards Armani Tinsley, Karim Murray, Efrain Hodby, and Kyree Boyton.  The newcomers are U of D Mercy commits guard Josh McFolley, and forward Gerald Blackshear.  Both transferred from Mt. Clemens over the Summer, and have played AAU together throughout high school.  The 6’8″ Blackshear will be the fourth Cowboy over 6’7,” joining seniors Julius Palmer, Kheir Maxwell, and Antwan Smith.

Oak Park– Oak Park will see a rapid change in their roster and lineup possibilities, as six new transfers will become eligible for the Knights.  After playing games this season with only eight eligible players, Oak Park is primed for a deep run in March.  Junior point guard Trevon Gardner is currently ecstatic with the new options at his disposal.  6’8″ senior forward Rodney Scales was on Oak Park last season, but went to Wisconsin to play football this past fall, and returned prior to the basketball season.  Scales will pair with 6’8″ junior Kelvon Fuller, already on the radar of division one colleges, and form a dynamic Knight front court.  Devin Mills, a transfer from Ferndale, is a high-scoring two guard in the backcourt that should provide plenty of offense, and is a carbon copy of senior guard Howard McInnis, instant offense.  River Rouge transfer Jonathan Raines, is only a sophomore, but adds even more size for the Knights at 6’7.”

Macomb Dakota- Not just a football power anymore, Paul Tocco’s Cougars won 19 games a year ago, and enter the second half of the season with a 5-2 record.  Dakota will add Mt. Clemens transfers Jermaine Jackson Junior and Charles Penn.  Jackson, son of former Detroit Piston Jermaine Jackson, is listed at 5’6″, but is as skilled as point guards at 6’6.”  He’s crafty, a great three point shooter, and exceptional creator/passer.  While Penn is 6’6,” and will give the Cougars a go-to scorer, rebounder, and versatile defender.

North Farmington– North Farmington is currently 9-0, and are led by seniors Jeron Rogers and Anthony Qasawa.  The Raiders are a talented team alone, now add Billy Thomas into the equation.  Thomas, transferred home from Genesis Academy after five months of competition and receiving division one offers.  The junior was on U of D Jesuit’s semi-final team a season ago, and will contribute as a reliable perimeter scorer and ball handler.

East English Village– The Bulldogs are undefeated in Detroit Public School League play.  East English Village is a primarily guard oriented team, juniors Kamari Newman, Chris Rollins, and Nate Bowlware have all had their respective moments thus far.  Yet their lone big man, 6’5″ Cedric Lattimore, has proven capable of a workhorse power forward.  Lattimore now receives aid in the front court, 6’5″ Jaylin McFadden, a transfer from Southfield Bradford.  McFadden is a skilled athlete and leaper, he will add an offensive and defensive rebounding presence EEVP will use to challenge not only for a city title, but state championship as well.


U of D Mercy Grabs Local Duo. Detroit Western’s Josh McFolley and Gerald Blackshear

7 Oct

MtClemensHoops_0-full“It feels great to commit to U of D Mercy,” were the words of Detroit Western senior guard Josh McFolley, “because the minute they recruited me they treated me like I was family.”

The 6’0″ 155 pound McFolley ended his recruitment with a pledge to the Titans on Monday night, after strongly considering fellow Horizon League members Cleveland State, and Oakland.

“It (U of D Mercy) fitted my playing style and the coaches seem like they care a lot about getting the players their education and helping them become better to get to the next level.”

Josh over the course of his high school career has been labeled a deadly perimeter shooter, but during his final year of travel basketball took on the responsibility as a primarily ball handler, distributor, and play maker for his AAU team.  He’s also improved on his agility, and athleticism throughout the progression of his prep career.

??????????????????????????????Josh last season attended Mt. Clemens High School, where the Bathers bowed out in the Class C quarterfinal game against eventual champion Detroit Consortium.  But with coaching changes, and rumors of the school district closing as a whole, McFolley decided it was best for him to finish high school at Detroit Western International.  Along with McFolley, Western also received transfer Gerald Blackshear, a 6’8″ senior forward from Mt. Clemens as well, who committed to U of D Mercy the same day as Josh did.

“It feels great to be going to school with a brother figure (Gerald),” Josh had to say, “and somebody you be around with everyday.”  “To get a chance to play with him and continuer our journey is incredible.

Both McFolley and Blackshear, in accordance with MHSAA rules, will have to sit the first semester of the school.  The two will be eligible for competition roughly around Martin Luther King Jr. Day for the Cowboys, who are favorites not only the win a Detroit City title but challenge for a Class A state crown as well.

Taylor Truman Tops Detroit Western 65-48

29 Dec

TaylorTrumanWhat sums this game up is simply, Truman’s starting 5  was better than the Cowboys.  The Cougars used a 21-8 run in roughly a five minute stretch in the opening quarter to get a double digit lead and coast to an easy victory.  The only time Western would cut the lead down to single digits was 8 after the end of the third quarter.  However, the Cougars held Cowboy star sophomore guard Brailen Neely scoreless in the fourth, a major factor in winning the game, Neely finished up with 16 points in the game.   A key in the early first quarter run was senior point guard Devain Newbell, who scored 11 of his 17 points in the first quarter.  Newbill is an explosive guard in open space, with good handles that likes to get into the lane and create plays for Truman.  He has nice speed and can be effective when coming off a high ball screen.  To go along with 17 points, he had 6 assists, good enough to win the game MVP.

His partner in crime was 2014 U of D Mercy commit Aaron Foster-Smith.  Truman’s Mr. Basketball candidate did not disappoint, according to my stats,  Foster-Smith took 10 shots, and made all of them, including three three-pointers.  Aaron is wing with good size measuring in at 6’7″.  He is a explosive athlete, inside-out scorer, runs the break hard, and his body that needs to blocked out on rebounding, because if not, he will jump out of the gym and get the rebound, which he did 11 times vs. Western.  Foster-Smith is currently only under 100 points away from breaking Truman’s career scoring mark.

Not to be outdone in the victor fellow senior Anthony Wartley-Fritz.  In the win, Anthony had his best game of the season, getting a double-double with 11 points, and 13 rebounds.  Standing at 6’7″, Fritz, has good size, brings energy to the floor, and toughness.  He finished through a couple and-one plays, and went after rebounds hard the whole game.

With the victory, Truman is now 5-0 heading into the new year.  The Cowboys head into 2014 with a 1-4 record.

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