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David Cheeks (13) and the Kennedy Eagles knocked off Trenton 57-42 last Tuesday, but three nights later were edged 49-48 by Richard Gamble (20) and the Allen Park Jaguars. Heading into action this week, the Jags and Eagles are tied for second place in the Downriver League. Photo by Tom Alexander

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BOYS' BASKETBALL: Downriver League weekly roundup 1 (PHOTO)

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It was another big week for first-place Truman, as the Cougars (8-0, 6-0) knocked off visiting Anderson 55-42 last Tuesday and then three nights later handed Roosevelt a 65-46 defeat on the road.

Anthony Wartley-Fritz led Truman against the Titans (5-4, 3-3 Downriver League) with 18 points and he pulled down 11 rebounds. Aaron Foster-Smith scored 15 and grabbed 16 rebounds in the winning effort. For Anderson, Dejon Matthews led with 19 points.

Truman was up 11-6 after the first quarter and had a 24-13 advantage at the half.

In the third quarter, Anderson outscored the hosts by three points, but the home team didn’t let its lead slip away and ultimately walked off with the 13-point victory.

In Wyandotte three nights later, the Cougars dominated even without starting point guard Devain Newbill, who averages 11 points per game and is among the team’s leaders in most statistical categories.

Matthew Mason stepped in at point guard for Newbill and scored nine points, but it was Foster-Smith and Wartley-Fritz who stole the show once more, as both players finished with another double-double.

Foster-Smith led all scorers with 21 points and pulled down 10 rebounds, while Wartley-Fritz had 16 points and grabbed a team-leading 12 rebounds.

The Cougars jumped out to an 18-4 lead after the first quarter and were up 31-13 at the half.

In the third quarter, Roosevelt managed 17 points, which included seven of Tyler Thorington’s team-high 11, while teammate Ramases Patterson knocked down a three and both Jacob Lavis and Tommy Cannon added two each.

The Bears’ Donnie Corley had the team’s second highest point total of the night with eight, while Patterson finished with seven.

To wrap things up, Foster-Smith scored eight fourth-quarter points for Truman, highlighted by back-to-back slam dunks.

The Cougars were in action again last night at Trenton and now have a big weekend in front of them, as they’ll host in-city rival Kennedy on Friday and the following night will welcome in Inter-City Baptist, which will be a battle of Downriver’s two state-ranked teams. Truman entered last week ranked No. 8 by the Michigan Associated Press in Division 1 and Inter-City came in ranked No. 4 in Division 4.

Allen Park

After a victory on Jan. 7, Allen Park picked up two more wins last week, on the road, and now sits in a second-place tie in the Downriver League.

The Jaguars (6-3, 4-2 DRL) knocked off Melvindale 51-48 on Tuesday and edged second-place Kennedy 49-48 on Friday.

Antonio Reviere had 16 points and nine rebounds against the Cardinals (2-6, 2-4 DRL), while Richie Slate added 11, Richard Gamble netted eight and Jarett Shinault put up seven. Gamble also grabbed seven rebounds in the contest.

Melvindale’s Malik Boynton led all scorers for the night with 25 points, while teammate Albert Webster had nine.

Allen Park owned a 31-10 lead after the first half, but had to hang on in the final 16 minutes, as Boynton caught fire and the Cards outscored the Jags 38-20.

“We didn’t shoot real well and they rebounded great in the second half,” said Allen Park Coach Jim Victor. “Credit to Melvindale for battling back in the game, thankfully we were able to hang on and get a good road win.”

In the battle at Kennedy, Reviere scored a game-high 20 points to go along with 13 rebounds, while Shinault added 11 points. The Eagles (5-3, 4-2 DRL) got 14 points from Andia Marsh and a double-double, 10 points and 13 rebounds, from Matt Woloszyk.

The Jags jumped out to 15-12 advantage in a fast-paced first quarter and then opened the second on a 9-1 run, but Kennedy cut into the lead and made it a 26-19 game at the half.

Led by nine third-quarter points from Marsh, and some tough defense, the Eagles were only down by one heading into the final eight minutes of the game.

With less than two minutes left in the fourth quarter, Kennedy grabbed a 46-45 lead, its first of the game, but Shinault hit back with four points for Allen Park and the Jags fended off the hosts to claim the narrow victory.

Last night Allen Park hosted Carlson and on Friday will travel to Lincoln Park.


Three nights before getting knocked off by the Jags, Kennedy welcomed in Trenton and handed the Trojans (2-7, 1-6 DRL) a 57-42 defeat.

After one quarter of play, the Eagles were up 13-9 and at the half led just 21-18. However, the hosts scored 18 in each of the final two quarters and held down the Trojans enough to come away with the 15-point win.

Marsh paced the Eagles with 16 points, while Kareth O’Neal added 14 for his squad. Marsh also grabbed a team-leading eight rebounds and Woloszyk pulled down five.

Christian Mercure led Trenton with 14 points, while teammate Jaylin Jordan netted 11 and pulled down a team-high six rebounds.

Kennedy was back on its home court again last night for a game against Lincoln Park and on Friday will head across town for a battle with in-city rival Truman. Trenton hosted Truman last night and on Friday is scheduled to travel to Woodhaven.


Aside from its loss to Truman Friday night, Roosevelt also played two other games earlier in the week. On Monday the Bears were upset 43-40 in a makeup game at Trenton, but then bounced back the next day at Lincoln Park with a 63-59 win.

Roosevelt grabbed an 11-6 first-quarter lead against the Trojans (2-7, 1-6 DRL), helped by four points from Jacob Lavis, who finished with a team-high 14. Leading all scorers in the game was Trenton’s Christian Mercure, who scored 20 for the Trojans in the winning effort.

Trenton’s shooters got hot in the second quarter and took over the lead, going into the half up 22-20 against the Bears.

After the break, the Trojans maintained the lead and were up 31-27 going into the final eight minutes.

Inside the last minute of the game, Roosevelt held a narrow lead, but some timely free-throw shooting from Mercure helped put Trenton back on top late.

Down by three with only a few seconds to go, Roosevelt got a good look for a game-tying 3-pointer, at the buzzer, but couldn’t convert.

“I told our kids at the end of the night I was proud of the effort and that we continue to play hard, and we play together,” said Bears Coach Shawn Stewart. “But we continue to be our own worst enemy with the turnovers and the misses at the free-throw line.”

In addition to Mercure, Jaylin Jordan also hit double figures for the Trojans, as he came away with 10 points and teammate Chris Roussey pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds.

Roosevelt’s Tyler Thorington and Tommy Cannon each finished second behind Lavis in points with seven points and Cannon led his team in rebounds with seven.

The next night, the Bears got off to a strong start at Lincoln Park and were up 18-6 after the first quarter. Lavis scored five of his game-high 26 points in the first quarter after converting on some key passes from point guard Donovan Stewart.

Roosevelt maintained its strong play against Railsplitters (4-4, 4-3 DRL) in the second quarter and was up 32-21 at that half.

Lavis stayed hot in the second half and in the third quarter put a 10-point performance to help his squad maintain its advantage.

The final quarter saw Lincoln Park battle back and at one point grab a 56-54 lead. However, down the stretch Thorington came up big, while Lavis hit four free throws and Stewart hit a pair to help the Bears get the road victory.

“I told the kids at the end of the game how proud I was of the way they came out and competed after the loss last night,” said Shawn Stewart. “…The difference was our ability to make free throws tonight, because we got a few favorable calls that we capitalized on and we made smarter decisions with the ball.”

For Lincoln Park, Kenny Wright had 17 points against Roosevelt, while Tywan Cage and Joe Decoster each scored 12.

The Bears hosted Woodhaven last night and on Friday will travel to Melvindale.

*Freelance writer Sean McCabe contributed to this report

Last Updated: 1/21/2014 2:41:05 PM EST