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West Bloomfield claims first district title since 2003 with win over St. Mary's

Basketball   | Jeff Dullack

West Bloomfield claims first district title since 2003 with win over St. Mary's

Farmington – A season ago, West Bloomfield saw its season come to a finish in heartbreaking fashion, losing to Orchard Lake St. Mary’s in double overtime of the district semifinals.

Fast forward to Friday night as the Lakers were out for a little redemption as they faced St. Mary’s at Farmington high school, looking for their first Class A district title since 2003.

While St. Mary’s would cut a 13 point deficit down to just four early in the fourth quarter, the Lakers would recover and pull away late for a 57-43 win, not only giving West Bloomfield its first district title in 14 years, but its first win over the Eaglets since 1956.

West Bloomfield (14-8) now advances to the regional semifinals where it will face Howell on Monday at Walled Lake Northern high school.

“This is our little redemption tour,” West Bloomfield coach Jeremy Denha said. “We beat Farmington, we lost to Farmington a few years back, we got to beat St. Mary’s, we all know what that game was like last year and we’re probably going over to the regional and playing a Walled Lake school if we get past Howell.”

In the third quarter, West Bloomfield would build its largest lead of the game after a 15-5 run capped off by a Tre Harvey basket that put the Lakers up 35-22.

But with the help of junior forward Caden Prieskorn, the Eaglets would come storming back as Prieskorn rattled off nine straight points – seven of which came in the final minute of the third quarter – to cut the deficit down to 35-31 in the opening moments of the fourth quarter.

Denha said that while the Eaglets were able to put a dent into the West Bloomfield lead, he was still confident about his team’s chances after the third quarter.

“We were still in better shape than we were at halftime, even with that surge,” he said. “My explanation to them was that was their run, they’re done now. I’m just so proud of these guys, they battled.”

Prieskorn finished with a team-high 19 points to pace St. Mary’s (13-7), while C.J. Wilson finished with 13 points in the loss for the Eaglets. Wilson finishes his high school career with 1,264 career points, fifth most in St. Mary’s history.

Throughout the vast majority of the night, West Bloomfield had an answer for every run St. Mary’s had and the Lakers had another in the fourth quarter.

West Bloomfield would push its lead back to eight near the midway point of the fourth quarter on a Kevin McAdoo basket and after a Josh Ross triple for St. Mary’s, the Lakers would close out the game on a 9-2 run, including six from McAdoo.

“I shows how tough we are, how mentally stable we are,” McAdoo said of his team’s ability to hold off St. Mary’s. “We got out to a slow start, they punched us in the mouth, but we came back every time, we kept fighting and that gave us the win.”

McAdoo finished with a game-high 23 points to lead the way for West Bloomfield, while Tyler Davis contributed eight points, all of which came in the fourth quarter for the Lakers.