BY WENDI REARDON PRICE
Clarkston News Sports Writer
Cagers began their journey to the Breslin Center this week with district playoffs.
“This is the most nerve wrecking part of our season for me because one game and you are done,” shared Dan Fife, head coach for Clarkston Boys Varsity Basketball, who knows all too well the intensity of playoffs through his 35 years as coach.
“You can’t afford to have a bad game or do something silly. You have to be playing hard and playing smart all the time,” he added. “You have to keep your composure and play how you have been playing all year from the get-go. Everybody who plays us has a bullseye on us.”
The Wolves finished the regular season with a 76-37 win over Rochester Adams last Thursday while also winning their 11th consecutive league crown.
The Highlanders opened with the lead and held onto it for the first three minutes of the game until sophomore Taylor Currie scored off senior Dylan Alderson’s rebound, putting the score 8-7 for the Wolves.
The teams battled back and forth for the lead for the next minute until Alderson tipped in a miss shot to take a 1-point lead, starting a 10-2 run ending the first quarter, 21-14.
The Highlanders opened the second quarter with a pair of baskets which was matched with a pair of 3-pointers from junior Foster Loyer and a basket from junior Demond Mills-Bradley off a steal.
The Wolves closed the half with a 38-28 lead and came back from half time with a 15-0, starting with seven points from Alderson. The Highlanders only broke through with one field goal during the quarter which closed, 66-31.
“We played the second half much better,” said Fife. “The intensity on defense was much better. The mindset changed. We can’t afford not to play our hardest – mentally and physically. The game is as much mental as physical.”
The game finished with two crowd pleasing points from senior Shayan Ghadamabadi at the buzzer.
Loyer led the team with 31 points and scored five 3-pointers. Alderson scored 22 points and had two field goals.
The Wolves opened the week with a 68-61 win over West Bloomfield, Feb. 28. Loyer scored 31 points during the win.
The boys opened the week with a win against Waterford Mott in the first round of district playoffs on Monday, 76-20. Alderson led with 23 points. Robinson and Loyer contributed 15 points each.
The semifinals continue on Wednesday against Lake Orion and finals are set for Friday. Both games are at 7 p.m. at Lake Orion.
The district winner moves on to Regional 7 playoffs with semifinals at 5 p.m. on Monday, March 13 and finals at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 15. Both games at Grand Blanc High School.