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Detroit Edison holds off Covenant Christian to advance to first Class C Final

Basketball   | Jeff Dullack

Detroit Edison holds off Covenant Christian to advance to first Class C Final

East Lansing – While Detroit Edison looked well on its way to a comfortable Class C semifinal win over Grand Rapids Covenant Christian, after doubling up the Chargers in the first half, 28-14, the Pioneers found themselves needing to fend off a comeback attempt in the second half.

Although Edison’s comfortable lead would evaporate by the early stages of the fourth quarter, where Covenant Christian tied the game at 39-39, the Pioneers would respond in a big way to close out the game by scoring the final 11 points to advance to the Class C final with a 55-43 win.

In the Class C Final, Edison (16-10) will face the winner of the second Class C semifinal of the day between Maple City Glen Lake and Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central on Saturday at 4:00 back at the Breslin Center in East Lansing.

Detroit Edison head coach Boe Neely said that despite Covenant Christian’s comeback attempt in the second half, he felt his team did a good job of keeping its composure and learning from some of its previous losses this season.

“We were just going to maintain our composure,” he said. “We’ve been in a lot of tough battles this year, we’ve been battle tested and we’ve had teams come back on us before. We lost some games that way – we lost 10 games this year, we lost games in just about any way you could imagine, but we’ve never been blown out. So we were just maintaining our composure and just understand what we needed to do to be sitting here.”

Entering the fourth quarter trailing 37-31, the Chargers would go on a quick 8-2 run behind 3-pointers from Tyler Cammenga and Nathan Minderhoud to tie the game up at 39-39 with under six minutes left to play.”

Covenant Christian head coach Tyler Schimmel said that he didn’t make many halftime adjustments, but rather shots simply started falling for his team in the second half.

“Not much,” he said. “Basically, we just talked about changing a few things on defense, but not many. For some reason, we were timid a little bit early on and we thought we were just as good and they’re a good team. But the shots just didn’t fall.”

Marson Meulenberg led the way for Covenant Christian (22-5) with 12 points and 12 rebounds, while Trenton Koole also finished with 12 points in the loss for the Chargers.

But shortly after Covenant Christian tied the game up, Edison would find its rhythm again as the Deante Johnson knocked down a pair of baseline jumpers to give Edison a 46-43 lead and the Pioneers wouldn’t surrender that lead in the final three minutes.

Johnson, who was in foul trouble for the majority of Thursday’s game, said that he felt the need to deliver for his teammates down the stretch after being limited in the first three quarters by that foul trouble.

“I work on it every day and I had to come up big for my team because I was in foul trouble throughout the whole game,” he said. “I wasn’t the presence in the middle that I’m used to being, so I had to make it up somehow, some way in the fourth quarter for my team and that’s what happened.”

Edison would pull away as Gary Solomon accounted for four straight points to push the Pioneer lead to 50-43 late in the game.

Solomon finished with a game-high 15 points and 10 rebounds to lead Edison, while Pierre Mitchell Jr. chipped in with 13 points.