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Clintondale's Bronze mettle; Dragons dispatch New Haven PHOTO GALLERY

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Team opens division play with first win of the season

Coach Brandon Seay’s Clintondale Dragons went into Tuesday’s MAC Bronze Division opener against visiting New Haven with an Oh No! record.

Make that an Oh Jeez! overall mark.

“We were 0-6,” said Seay. “Believe me, we needed this win.”

His Dragons certainly did not play like a winless team as they dominated the visiting Rockets, emerging with a 35-16 victory in the MAC Bronze opener for both schools.

Senior guard Mia Wilson led the Dragons with 10 points. Aryhanna Tyus scored seven, while Sabrina Casteel and Princess Johnson tossed in four points each.

Seay’s squad raced out to an 11-0 lead in the first quarter, and was up 21-10 at halftime.

“We came out and went right after New Haven. I was happy to see that. We needed to win to set the bar and let people know that we can play basketball at Clintondale. From my perspective, this game was very important. The win gives the girls confidence. We had a real rocky start to the season.

“I did not want to lose the girls. Not that any of the players would’ve quit if we kept losing, but they might have quit listening to me,” said Seay, smiling. “You don’t want your words to go in one ear and right out the other ear.”

Other teams around the MAC Bronze should listen up. Clintondale can play basketball. As a young New Haven team already realizes, the Dragons should hang well with the other division teams; Clawson, East Detroit and Lincoln.

Seay has seven players back from last year’s team.

Coach Latwan Turner’s Rockets field a roster that includes three freshmen, three sophomores and a couple of juniors.

“A lot of these girls are young in terms of the game of basketball. It is a learning process for them right now,” said the coach. “It is all about teaching and learning. As you can expect, there will be some ups and downs right now,” said Turner.

A definite up occurred just last week when his Rockets knocked off Mount Clemens, 41-37, despite playing with just four players in the final five minutes of the game due to foul trouble. During that stretch, they out-scored the Bathers 11-2.

Mount Clemens led 35-32 when New Haven could only put four players on the court. The Rockets had three players foul out.

“We had a really, really good game last week against Mount Clemens. It was probably our strongest game. The effort was there. Everybody played hard. With these girls, it is all about being confident. We are trying to find our confidence.”

Hali Rucker scored five against Clintondale. Sharee Gilreath added four points.

Last Updated: 1/3/2017 9:16:58 PM EST