Tag Archives: OAA

Qasawa Leads North Farmington In 71-52 Route Of Oak Park

16 Jan

photo-3Don’t look now, but the Raiders of North Farmington remain undefeated at 9-0 in the middle of January after dismantling top ten ranked and OAA member foe Oak Park.

The saying goes, “defense wins championship” has not come into fruition just yet for the Raiders, but Thursday night’s win laid the blue print on how to accomplish that feat.

North Farmington’s pressing full court defense was able to force Oak Park into 27 total team turnovers on the night.  A stat regardless of the amount of talent a team has is difficult to overcome.

“Our coach always tells us to fly around and make people go at our speed,” said senior forward Anthony Qasawa.

“Today we really made Oak Park get out of their comfort zone and forced  them to make lots of turnovers.”

North Farmington came away with 14 takeaways in the first half, and built a 31-24 intermission advantage.

The Raiders began to distance themselves early in the third quarter, starting the second half on a 10-2 run in which Qasawa netted seven of his 12 points in the quarter before finishing with a game high 25 points.

“The first half, I tried to get my teammates involved,” said Qasawa.  “In the third I just let the game come to me and not force shots.  I was in a rhythm and I just went from there.”

North Farmington even streched their lead to as much as 25 in the third, with 6 different players scoring in the stanza.  The Knights only found continuity within their offense late in the fourth,  as many starters for North Farmington found themselves seated on the bench, the lead never dwindled below 16.  Giving the Raiders a well deserved victory.

“This was a huge statement win for us because it proves we can hang and beat the top teams in the state,” Qasawa also said.

The lone bright spot for Oak Park was senior guard Howard McInnis, with a team high 18 points, followed by Kelvon Fuller with 10 points, five rebounds, and four blocks.

Aside from his 25 points, Qasawa also came away with five rebounds, and three steals and assists.  Fellow senior Jeron Rogers netted 15 points and seven rebounds, while the junior class provided support as well.  Alex Darden contributed 11 points, and five rebounds, point guard Jacob Joubert had nine points five steals and three assists, and Josh Hogans stepped in off the bench for eight total points.

The win for North Farmington comes despite key transfer in junior Billy Thomas sidelined. Thomas has been in the state for roughly two weeks, he was in attendance for the game, but did not dress.  Thomas could possibly return as early as next Tuesday when all transfers across the state gain eligibility.  Regardless, when the time comes, Thomas will add another dimension to frustrate the Raider opposition.

“I think Billy will give another scorer and somebody else who can handle the ball,” Qasawa commented.  “Which will make us a better threat to opposing teams.”


Interview with Jonathan Williams

23 Feb


Toledo commit and Southfield-Lathrup star Jonathan Williams has almost every offensive talent to succeed at the nest level.  One of state’s elite combo guards, Jonathan is a pure scorer.  You must have one maybe even two guys guarding him.  Because if you don’t, he could drop 30 points.  Improving as an all around ball player as he states in the interview.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: Height, weight, and position please?

Jonathan WilliamsMy height is 6’3″ 1/2, my weight is 190 lbs, my position is combo guard.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: Thoughts on how the season has been going so far?

Jonathan Williams: As a whole, not too good.  We could’ve been much better but we are working on it everyday and looking forward to playing in the state tournament.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: Best moments you have had this season?

Jonathan Williams: I would say playing in a hostile environment.  Like vs. Southfield High or Country Day or even Pontiac.  But the ultimate best moment I’ve had this season was the game winning pull-up vs. Troy.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: What mark or impact do you think you are leaving on Lathrup being one if not the best players to come out of there?

Jonathan Williams: I would say that I’m leaving the mark as example that hard work and dedication pays off.  Everyone that knows me know that I work hard and have worked hard to get to the place that I’m at and still progressing.  Hard work makes me who I am.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: How tough would you say it is being one of the state’s top combo guards, but being on a struggling team?

Jonathan Williams: Real tough.  I would say its making me an all around better player because I’m forced to do thing other than score.  It’s making me a more mature person as well I think my game is growing playing with a struggling team, whether is looks like it or not.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: What made you pick Toledo to continue your basketball career?

Jonathan Williams:  Toledo was the perfect fit for me.  I loved their facilities and the players and the coaching staff made me feel like family.  They showed the most love so I felt it was only right to go where I was comfortable.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: What skills are you going to bring to Toledo to help the team?

Jonathan Williams: I think I can bring scoring and leadership.  Also I think can be a decent rebounder.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: Advice for you that are trying to become like you?

Jonathan Williams: To work hard on what is important to you everyday.  Keep a level head and stay humble.  And to give credit to God for blessing you and to others for helping you.

Metro Detroit High School Athletics: What and fun/interesting fact about you?

Jonathan Williams: I can bowl a little.  I eat a lot!  And I’m often considered to be a funny guy.

Follow us on Twitter: @mdhsathletics

Follow Jonathan on Twitter: @D1_JonJon

Lake Orion 27 Cass Tech 34

19 Nov

The 2010 and 2011 MHSAA Division 1 State Championship winners squared off in a much-anticipated semi-final game this previous Saturday.  Cass Tech and Lake Orion, teams that were ranked high in the polls all year long, battled it out in a 2012 semi-final game that lived up to all the hype leading up to the game.  The Technicians of Cass Tech struck first on a 71 td reception from division 1 recruit Damon Webb following both teams going 3 and out on their first possessions.  The Dragons would not wait too long to respond.  In fact on the ensuing possession that is, senior running back Jacob Miller plowed in from 1 yard out to tie the game at 7 all.  The big play on the drive being a 57 yard reception from slotback Christopher Leigh.  The Technicians would re-take the lead on their next possession.  Michigan commit Jourdan Lewis returned the kickoff to the Lake Orion 21.  Setting up a sophomore running back Mike Weber for a 5 yard td.  Following another 3 and out for the Dragons, Cass would strike again.  Cass would score on a 8 yard td run from Jayru Campbell, but on this drive, Cass had to work for it.  Campbell completed a pass to Weber on 4-4 setting them up for the td.  Lake Orion’s next drive would stall again and they would be forced to punt.  Lewis was back at his goal line when he received the punt and raced for what appeared the be an electrifying 100 td return, only to brought back on a penalty.  Cass would do nothing on their drive giving the ball back to Lake Orion before half.  With under 10 seconds to play in the half, senior quarterback Derek Delaura would find fellow senior Chaz Miller going across the middle for a 10 yard td to put the Dragons down only 7 21-14 going into half-time.  Lake Orion and Cass would not do anything of their first possessions to start the 2nd.  But Lake Orion would tie the game up at 21 on their 2nd possession of the 3rd quarter.  Methodically passing the ball down the field, Delaura would find Jeremy Miller in the end-zone.  Cass would respond to the pressure with a td of their own.  Lewis would come up come up with 3 big receptions on the drive and one of them being a 29 td catch.  Never count out the Dragons, slotback Corey Ester would sprint to end-zone for a 71 run to again tie the game so it appeared.  The Dragons missed the pat which would’ve tied the game.  Cass’ next drive would take them all the way to the Lake Orion 4 set up by a 26 yard rush from Weber.  Cass would try to power the ball in but failed all three times.  Coach Wilcher called a fake field goal trying to catch Lake Orion napping, but the Dragons were ready, stuffing Campbell back behind the line of scrimmage.  Lake Orion desperate to get something going could not get a first down.  Finally on 4th down Coach Bell decided to go for it and failed.  Cass would take over on downs inside Lake Orion territory and Mike Weber went in from 10 yards out to seal the game.  Lake Orion would have one final drive but could not do anything.

Final Score: Cass Tech 34 Lake Orion 27


I was impressed with multiple things in this game from Cass.  Their passing game, Jayru Campbell was looking for that one game where he could say “I took it over.”  Campbell went 10-13 for almost 200 yards in the effort with 2 passing and 1 rushing td.  A great individual performance.

The running game.  Cass has averaged about 300 yards on the ground all year.  Recently Mike Weber has stepped in the playoffs.  He had over 100 yards in the 4th quarter.  A great sign for the green and white going into the championship game.

Finally the Defense.  The Cass defense really showed their toughness throughout the game. For the most part they held a very solid Lake Orion ground game.  Cass must do it again if they wish to beat Detroit Catholic Central, a team that loves to run the ball, in the championship.

Cass Tech vs. Lake Orion 2012

17 Nov

The best game in my opinion in Michigan is Cass Tech vs. Lake Orion at Troy Athens High School.  The very game was played in the 2010 state semi-finals.  In that game, Cass had the ball inside the Lake Orion 10 yard line with under a minute left to play.  Senior quarterback Keith Moore took the shotgun snap and was rolling to his left on an option play.  Looking to pitch the ball to wideout Kishon Wilcher, a Dragon player came out of no where and hit Keith in his attempt to pitch the ball.  The fumble was recovered by Lake Orion, sealing the game and sending the Dragons to Ford Field where they beat Plymouth for the Division 1 State Championship.  This year Cass comes in with a different identity than the 2010 team.  The 2010 Cass Tech team was called the “track team on turf” by some people, due to some of their players being under five foot nine.  The 2012 Cass Tech team, is certainly just as fast as that team, but they are also bigger.  The offensive line of Cass Tech is one of the best in the State of Michigan led by two 280 plus linemen David Dawson, and Michigan State commit Dennis Finley.  These two will have to be on their game if Cass hopes to have success with Mike Weber and Gary Hosey in the running game.  For Lake Orion, they just beat Macomb Dakota in the regionals last week by a score of 51-35.  The Dragons have an explosive ground game.  Running backs Jacob Miller and Christopher Leigh both had big games vs Dakota last week.  One thing about the Dragons is that they call themselves a spread team but they are under center more times than they are in the shotgun.  They love to send receivers in motion just about every play either handing the ball to them on a jet, or faking a handoff and giving it to a running back on a little belly play.  This game will come down the execution for both teams.  If Cass hopes to win, they must play solid defence especially in the running game.  If they give up 300 or more yards on the ground, this game will go to Lake Orion.  Lake Orion must establish the run game.  The Dragons don’t throw the ball much, which could be a problem if they are trailing late in the game.  In the end, Cass will get its revenge in the 2010 semi-finals sending them on a return trip to Ford Field.

Cass Tech: 28  Lake Orion: 24

Game of the Week 10/26/12

26 Oct

My game of the week selection usually takes place on Thursday, but for this week it will happen on a Friday.  The game of the week for the first round of the MHSAA State Playoffs will feature a rematch of the Prep Kickoff Classic, with Martin Luther King leaving the City of Detroit to battle the Blue Jays of Southfield High School.  If you remember the game back in August, the Crusaders had control for most of the game, but stalled in the fourth quarter due to their seven turnovers.  The defense looked very good for MLK, only allowing a total of 21 points to a team that ended up beating perennial power Farmington Hill Harrison.  Southfield’s offense is quite interesting from what we have seen from them in the years past.  Their quarterback Tre Walton, a converted wide-receiver, lines up in the pistol with a running back in a three-point stance directly behind him.  They will send a receiver in motion trying to create a triple option and try to take advantage of Walton’s running ability.  If the Crusaders find a way to figure the offense out, they will most likely have no problems winning the game.  But I am not convinced that after last weeks city championship performance, where they gave up 48 points to East English, they will be able to contain this potent Blue Jays Offense.  Who needs to stop the ball when you score 51 points?  That is what the Crusaders did last week.  Devaun Williams was flawless connecting with Mycial Allen for two touchdowns.  King also got production on special teams with Avonte returning a kickoff for 81 yards.  This game will be a shootout.  The Blue Jays will give the Crusaders a battle, but King will march on to the district final.

Southfield: 35 King: 42

Enjoy the first round everyone!

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