Dakota players and coaches celebrate after the Cougars were named the Macomb County girls Team of the Year. Dakota won a school-record 20 games and a Class A district championship. (Macomb Daily staff photo by David Dalton)
BASKETBALL: LCN's Conklin, Ford's Harper named county's top players VIDEO
Rick Repicky was named girls Coach of the Year after leading Sterling Heights to a MAC Blue co-championship and a Class A district title. (David Dalton photo)
L'Anse Creuse North players and coaches accept the boys Team of the Year award. The Crusaders won the MAC Red Division championship and a Class A district title. (David Dalton photo)
Mizell Lippett of Fitzgerald accepts for the Spartans' Joe Kopicki the Macomb County boys Coach of the Year award. Kopicki's team won the MAC Blue Division title. Kopicki was the 1978 county Player of the Year. (David Dalton photo)
Joe Kopicki is still making Macomb County basketball history.
The former Fitzgerald star was named Tuesday the county boys Coach of the Year following a season in which he led the Spartans to a league championship.
Kopicki, who following his Spartans career played for the University of Detroit and in the NBA, became the first county Player of the Year award winner to receive the county’s top coaching honor.
Kopicki was named Player of the Year in 1978, when he helped Fitzgerald win the county Team of the Year award.
The announcement of Kopicki’s coaching award was made at The Macomb Daily’s annual basketball awards dinner at Mirage in Clinton Township.
Kopicki’s Spartans won the Macomb Area Conference Blue Division championship with an 11-1 record. Fitzgerald won 17 games overall.
League and district champions L’Anse Creuse North and Mount Clemens shared the boys Team of the Year award.
They were the only county teams to win both league and district titles.
L’Anse Creuse North won the MAC Red and a Class A district.
Mount Clemens was champion of the MAC Gold and won a Class C district.
Each team won a regional semifinal game.
Senior Tyler Conklin of L’Anse Creuse North, who has signed with Northwood University, was named boys Player of the Year.
Dakota was named girls Team of the Year after posting a school-record 20 victories and winning a Class A district championship.
The Cougars, runners-up to Class A state finalist Grosse Pointe South in the MAC Red Division, defeated two MAC division champions in district play, and another in regional action.
Cris Harper, a senior who led Ford to 19 victories and a Class A district title, was named the girls Player of the Year.
Rick Repicky, who led Sterling Heights to 20 victories, a co-championship in the MAC Blue Division and a Class A district crown, was named girls Coach of the Year.
Earl Cureton, a former Detroit Pistons player, was the guest speaker.
Mike Lee of Cousino, the 2012 county girls Coach of the Year, was the toastmaster.
Six players were named to the All-Macomb County First Teams for girls and boys.
Carly D’Almeida of L’Anse Creuse, Harper, Bethany McCord of Cousino, Marisa Oleksiak of L’Anse Creuse North, Becca Sabol of Regina and Kylie Townsley of Dakota were named to the girls First Team.
Conklin, Rayshawn Griffin of New Haven, Brandon Hicks of Lincoln, Mizell Lippett of Fitzgerald, Keith Phillips of Warren-Mott and A.J. Turner of De La Salle were named to the boys First Team.
The all-county team was selected by the sports staff of The Macomb Daily.
The awards dinner has been sponsored by the newspaper since the late 1960s.