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BOYS' BASKETBALL: Huron League roundup (PHOTO)

Lurking Huron nets two important wins

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Huron kept itself within striking distance of Huron League powers Milan and Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central by securing a pair of big league wins to claim sole possession of third place in the standings.

The Chiefs improved to 6-2 in Huron League play with key wins over Grosse Ile and Monroe Jefferson.

On Tuesday, the Chiefs overcame a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to upend the Red Devils 41-38 in Grosse Ile.

The teams were tied for third place in the Huron League standings entering the contest, but the Chiefs used a 16-3 fourth quarter advantage to pull away in the game and the standings.

“It was like we had our feet in the sand for three quarters,” Huron Coach Joe Cieslak said. “We were trying, but it seemed like we were a step slow. We had upped our pressure and it finally kicked in.”

While Cieslak was pleased, Grosse Ile Coach Bryan Friel was disappointed with his team’s output in the final eight minutes.

“It was probably one of the worst quarters we’ve played all year,” Friel said. “We’re up 10 points, but we just had not rhythm whatsoever.”

The Red Devils led 35-25 entering the final quarter, but managed only one basket, a three-pointer by London, in the last eight minutes.

“Offensively, we’re just not playing very well and it’s been a bunch of games in a row now,” Friel said. “The shots that we had were open and we just missed.”

Pressure defense led to Grosse Ile turnovers which led to quick points for the Chiefs in the comeback effort.

“We got a few steals here and there and we got a quick flurry of points and that seemed to energize us. We just finally got it together and took control of the game rather than be controlled by it.”

Huron’s Bill Ames led all scorers with 17 points and Tyler Olson came up with a few key steals in that pivotal fourth quarter.

London led the Red Devils with 14 points and Danny McCarty scored 11.

“We knew it would be a close game, but I don’t think any of us expected to blow a 10 point lead in the fourth quarter,” Friel said.

The Chiefs made it four-straight league victories on Friday with a 61-43 home victory over Jefferson.

“It was a nice, solid effort from start to finish,” Cieslak said. “We came out and took control of the game early.

“Anytime they tried to chip away at it, we responded with a pretty good run of our own.”

Ames had 17 in the win while Karan Ghuman added 15 and Tony Flaim recorded a double-double with 14 points and 15 rebounds.

The Chiefs (7-5, 6-2 Huron League) hosted Milan on Tuesday and will travel to rival Flat Rock on Friday.

Devils bounce back

Three days after squandering a 10-point fourth quarter lead in a loss to Huron, the Grosse Ile Red Devils avoided a similar fate on Friday, but survived a valiant comeback effort by Riverview to secure a 53-47 victory over the Bucs.

Grosse Ile dominated the first three quarters of play and took a 21-point lead into the fourth, but the Bucs upped the pressure and fought their way back into the game.

Trailing 43-22 entering the fourth, the Bucs went on a 21-6 run that took up much of the final quarter and cut the Red Devil lead to 49-43 with less than 40 seconds to play.

The Bucs would get no closer than six in the final minute and came up just short of an improbable victory.

Riverview’s Max Mousouleas scored 10 of his 12 points in the final quarter while Nolan Glime scored seven and Khalil Neal had six in the effort.

As good as their first three quarters were, nearly everything that could have gone wrong did for the Red Devils in the fourth.

Down the stretch, Grosse Ile lost starters Brian Christen and Tyler London to injury and were forced to plug in some less experienced players in crucial spots.

“We continued scoring to start the half, then we put some subs in and got some injuries,” Friel said. “Guys who aren’t used to going to the free throw line in crucial moments went to the line and missed some shots.”

In the fourth, the Red Devils made only two field goals, went a paltry 6-for-19 from the free throw line and were outscored 25-10 in the quarter.

“It is what it is, we pulled off the win,” Friel said.

Resilience has been a hot topic for Coach Sam Lamb and the Bucs as of late.

“I think our kids responded, they know this is a rivalry game and they played real hard,” Riverview Coach Sam Lamb said. “Today before we had a big team meeting about toughness. We told them don’t quit (and) keep on playing hard and they really responded.”

Before that spirited fourth quarter, the Bucs floundered throughout the first half and seemed poised to be on the wrong end of a lopsided game.

Danny McCarty and London were a two-man wrecking crew in the first quarter. McCarty scored Grosse Ile’s first 12 points, London had the next seven and the two combined for all 19 Grosse Ile points as opposed to just four for the Bucs.

“We just moved the ball,” Friel said. “If they’re going to play a zone, we have to move the ball. People moving and ball moving, they’re going to get confused and we’re going to get some good shots. That’s exactly what happened.

“On defense, we pretty much held them to one shot for the most part the entire first half.”

The Red Devil offense cooled considerably in the second quarter, but the Bucs could not gain any ground as Grosse Ile took a 28-10 lead into the half.

McCarty (16 points) and London (10 points) scored all but Red Devil points in the half.

“The first half, the first quarter, it was a clinic,” Lamb said. “They were getting layups, cutting perfect, moving the ball and sharing the ball.

“We tried to stop them in the second half and we did a pretty good job, but if you spot teams 18 points in the first half, shoot 23 percent and 0-for-9 from the three-point line, you’re not going to get many wins.”

The team’s resolve in the second half provided Lamb with encouraging signs of maturity that he thinks will pay dividends going forward.

“I think our young kids are starting to step it up and not just scoring and rebounding, but hustle plays,” Lamb said. “They’re talking about the little things, they’re taking charges and they’re picking each other up. They’re mentality is getting better and it’s really starting to show.”

McCarty led all scorers with 22 points. London had 12 points and six rebounds and Tom Daly added eight.

Glime led the Bucs with 14 points.

On Tuesday, the Bucs fell to powerful Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central 64-34.

Grosse Ile (8-5, 5-3 Huron League) hosted Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central on Tuesday and will remain home on Friday against Monroe Jefferson.

Riverview (2-11, 2-6 Huron League) traveled to Carleton Airport on Tuesday and will host Milan on Friday.

Last Updated: 2/5/2013 1:30:01 PM EST