Cass Tech holds off Pershing
Boys District Finals
U of D Jesuit, Frederick Douglass also wins district titles
By Harry M. Anderson, Jr.
Special to the Michigan Citizen
Last season in the MHSAA District Final, Cass Tech jumped out with a big lead over Pershing by hitting key baskets. However, the Doughboys came back and won the game on a basket at the buzzer ending the Technicians’ state title hopes. They hung their heads as they exited the Western International High gym
“I knew they learned a lot from that experience,” said Cass Tech Head Coach David Dixon. “Although most of them were juniors, they were hurt after that game.”
This year the Technicians met the Doughboys again for the MHSAA Class A District 20 Championship on March 7. The Technicians had a commanding lead throughout the contest, but in the fourth quarter the Doughboys came within a point (74-73) with 46.9 seconds left. The Technicians’ senior guard, Sharif Black, didn’t want a repeat of last year.
“I told everybody to play hard like we were down,” Black said. “We got fried last year, so we played with vengeance.”
Fellow Technician Robert Edwards took his words to heart. The junior guard hit a layup with 24.2 seconds left and both senior guards Michael Laster and Kenneth Carpenter each sank a free throw in the closing seconds to clinch a 78-73 victory over the PSL Champion Pershing Doughboys to win the MHSAA District 20 championship.
Edwards, who had a very good shooting game, led the Technicians (17-5) with 19 points. Carpenter scored 18 while Black scored 16. The Doughboys (20-3) had a strong scoring game from senior guard Mory Diane with a game-high 20 points, senior forward Justin Tillman with 17 points and senior guard Darsean Woodson with 16 points.
The Doughboys led 16-14 after one period. But the Technicians started hitting outside percentage shots and inside layups in the second period, scoring 24 points to Pershing’s 12 to lead 38-28 at the half.
The third period was just like the second with the Technicians hitting their shots and layups. After junior guard Marquel Ingram hit a layup to pull the Doughboys to within nine (43-34), Cass Tech went on a 13-9 run. The Technicians led 63-50 after three period of play.
Flashbacks of last year began to set in for the Technicians when the Doughboys’ aggressive play and hot shooting cut the Technicians 13-point lead to six thanks to a three-pointer by Ingram. Tillman’s pair of free throws made it three-point game (72-69) in the closing minutes. The Technicians bent, but didn’t break and held on to advance to the regional. “It feels great and we had to get them back for last year,” said Black.
“This year we had a lot of resiliency,” Dixon said. “The kids executed the game plan well. As for the regionals, we just have to work hard to get the job done.”
The Technicians advanced to the MHSSA Class A Region 4 at Cass Tech March 10. Results will be in the next issue of the Michigan Citizen.
U-D Jesuit (21-2) got 29 points from Cassius Winston as the Cubs defeated Mumford 73-53 to win the MHSAA Class A Region 21 District at Farmington High, March 7. Billy Thomas scored 18 for the Mustangs who finish at 18-5.
Southeastern won District 22 at Grosse Pointe North defeating East English Village 59-49. Both U-D High and Southeastern faced each other March 10 at the Class A Region 4 at Cass Tech. Results and coverage of the March 12 regional final will be in the next issue of the Michigan Citizen.