Bloomfield Hills Lahser’s Kyle Riley (32) grabs the jersey of Rochester’s James Young (1) during the fourth quarter of the game played on Tuesday Feb. 12, 2013 at Lahser High School. The Falcons defeated the Knights 62-55. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
Basketball - Boys
BOYS BASKETBALL: James Young puts up 33 points in Rochester's road win over Lahser WITH VIDEO
Bloomfield Hills Lahser’s Khalil Gracey (L) goes for the block on a short jumper from Rochester’s Arben Camaj (R) during the first quarter of the game played on Tuesday Feb. 12, 2013 at Lahser High School. The Knights lost to the Falcons 62-55. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
Bloomfield Hills Lahser’s Yante Maten (11) moves around Rochester’s James Young during the second quarter of the game played on Tuesday Feb. 12, 2013 at Lahser High School. Maten had 25 points for the Knights but they lost the game 62-55. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
Rochester teammates Jamar Randolph (22) and James Young (1) celebrate Rochester’s 62-55 win over Bloomfield Hills Lahser. Young had a game high 33 points and Randolph chipped in 14 points in the game played on Tuesday Feb. 12, 2013 at Lahser High School. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
BLOOMFIELD HILLS — There was no shortage of talent in the gym at Bloomfield Hills Lahser on Tuesday night.
And although it was a non-league matchup, the stands filled to capacity for a boys basketball tilt that featured the Knights, who boast one of the best junior classes in the state, and Rochester, which has Michigan’s top-ranked player and University of Kentucky-commit, James Young.
Behind another great defensive effort, Young and the Falcons continued their winning ways, grabbing a 62-55 road victory over Lahser.
“I’m proud as heck of our guys,” Rochester coach John Pleasant said. “We battled hard and got a tough win on the road against a really good team.”
“We knew that they were a good team,” Young said. “We knew that we were going to need to play good defense.”
Young was huge for Rochester, leading all scorers with a game-high 33 points to go with 11 rebounds, five assists, and four steals in the win.
“James has been really good,” Pleasant said. “He played extremely hard out there for us tonight.”
The Falcons (12-2, 5-1) trailed early, but good team defense and 18 combined points from Young in the second and third quarters gave them the cushion they needed to hold on.
“I couldn’t be more impressed with James’ play on the court,” Pleasant said. “He didn’t come out of the game tonight. He just does so much for our team.”
Lahser (11-4, 4-2) battled for a full 32 minutes, and junior Yante Maten did his part to keep the Knights in contention. The 6-foot-8 forward tallied a team-high 25 points in the loss and caused all sorts of problems for Pleasant’s squad.
“We were right with them for the whole game,” Lahser coach Duane Graves said. “Yante (Maten) is a beast. He’s starting to learn how to play the game like a man, and tonight was kind of a coming-out party for him.”
Along with Young, senior guard Jamar Randolph played a key role for Rochester, nailing four 3-pointers on his way to a 14-point night.
“He’s been coming along really nicely for us,” Pleasant said of Randolph. “The last two or three games, he’s been playing a lot more consistently.”
Young, who attracts a lot of attention from opposing defenses, noted the solid play from Randolph on Tuesday night.
“Jamar really stepped up tonight,” Young said. “I know that he’s capable of hitting threes, and he did a good job of hitting the open ones that he got off.”
Rochester continued to impress on defense. The Falcons have only allowed the other team to reach 60 points one time this year. And against a high-paced team like Lahser, that has good guards and a definite inside presence, Pleasant was pleased with how his guys performed.
“We’ve been playing good defense all year,” Pleasant said. “We figure that if we can keep teams from scoring 60, we’ll have a good chance to come away with a win. I thought we were good defensively tonight.”
Lahser remains in a tight race with for the OAA Blue Division, and the Knights get back to action in the conference with a game against Farmington.
The Falcons are chasing cross-town rival Rochester Adams in the OAA White Division standings, but the two teams still have a head-to-head matchup left on the schedule. Friday marks Rochester’s next league game, where it will travel to Ferndale.
“We have to just keep grinding,” Young said. “We have to stay thirsty every day in practice and keep working hard toward a state championship.”