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PSL QUARTERFINAL ROUNDUP: Contagious shooting lifts Renaissance past DCP-Northwestern

PSL QUARTERFINAL ROUNDUP: Contagious shooting lifts Renaissance past DCP-Northwestern
BY: MATTHEW B. MOWERY Feb 9, 11:05pm

DETROIT — When one guy starts to feel it, everyone can.

Hot shooting can be contagious, and that kind of viral spread was what helped Detroit Renaissance nail six consecutive 3-pointers in a second-quarter streak in Saturday’s quarterfinal game of the Public School League’s Boys Big “D” Basketball Tournament, and pull away from Detroit Collegiate Prep at Northwestern, winning 80-72.

“It really just starts when we start trusting each other, when we’re coming down the court. When we feel like we can trust everybody else on the court, we really get on that type of runs,” senior Kaylein Marzette said of the run, which turned a two-point game into a 15-point halftime lead for the Phoenix. “Yeah, real fun. It’s a lot of urgency, and just confidence. When we came back to the bench, everybody was like happy for each other, and for a championship team, that’s what you really want, that’s what you need to win.”

The Phoenix (14-3, 10-0 PSL West Town) advance to Tuesday’s semifinals at Cass Tech, where they’ll take on No. 4 Detroit King (15-2, 9-1 PSL Midtown) at 5 p.m.

Two months ago, considering Renaissance a championship team might’ve seemed more far-fetched, considering all the offseason drama, with coaching changes and transfers, but all of those distractions are now far in the rear-view mirror, allowing the Phoenix to just concentrate on basketball.

“It feels great. There was a lot of distraction,” Marzette said. “For a second, we weren’t even practicing, because of the distractions. But now that it’s playoff time, we’re just focused on basketball and basketball only.”

The Phoenix led Northwestern (7-9, 4-6 PSL Midtown) 23-14 after one quarter, but needed the 18-6 run in the second quarter to pull out to a 46-31 lead at the half. Northwestern put on a similar run near the end of the third quarter — with Eric Smith hitting one 3-pointer to cut the deficit to 10, then another to beat the buzzer, making it a three-point game, 59-56, headed to the fourth.

Renaissance answered the run with a 6-0 spurt to start the fourth, and pulled away comfortably throughout the final quarter.

“We let them slow our game down. Then when we were in the halfcourt, they sped us up. We like to run in the open court,” Marzette said. “After we started playing our game again, that’s when we got the lead back up.”

Marzette led Renaissance with 23 points, while Chandler Turner had 21, and Keon Henderson 13. Angelo Robertson and Kylin Grant had nine each.

Lawrence Napier led Northwestern with 22 points, while Smith, Steven Pierson and Dorian Weiss all had 12.

No. 7 DETROIT PERSHING 68, DETROIT MUMFORD 56

DETROIT — The quickest way to settle a back-and-forth game is to make your free throws in crunch time, and Pershing did that to perfection in Saturday’s quarterfinal game of the Public School League’s Boys Big “D” Basketball Tournament.

The Doughboys shot 17 for 20 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter, pulling away from Detroit Mumford for a 68-56 win.

Ranked No. 7 in Division 3, Pershing (16-1, 10-0 PSL East Town) advances to Tuesday’s semifinals at Cass Tech, where the Doughboys will take on the host Technicians (12-5, 9-1 PSL Midtown) at 7:30 p.m.

Mumford (8-6, 4-5 PSL West Town) took a 41-40 lead into the fourth against Pershing, as Kamaji Darwin (18 points) hit a pull-up jumper before the buzzer. Alan Gee Jr. had 16 points before fouling out with 2:16 to go, while DeMontez Walfork had 10 for Mumford.

Emmanuel Williams had 27 points for Pershing to lead all scorers, while Tharren Hill had 12 and Paire Hill had 10.

No. 8 DETROIT CASS TECH 75, DETROIT CMA 32

DETROIT — Cass Tech took its self-imposed nickname to heart.

The Technicians’ warm-up T-shirts, bearing the moniker “Press Tech, Est. 2016” on the front, with synonyms for pressure — coerce, push, persuade, influence, force, squeeze, bulldoze, hound, harass, nag, badger, prod, pester, bully, bludgeon, strong arm — on the back were very fitting for Saturday’s PSL tournament game against Detroit Communications and Media Arts.

Cass Tech did all of the above to CMA, forcing 21 first-half turnovers en route to a big early lead, and a comfortable, 75-32 win.

Ranked No. 8 in Division 1, the Technicians (12-5, 9-1 PSL Midtown) advance to Tuesday’s semifinals at their house, where they’ll take on Division 3’s No. 7 team, Detroit Pershing (16-1, 10-0 PSL East Town) at 7:30 p.m.

Cass Tech had six players score seven or more points, led by 15 from Kalil Whitehead, 14 from Daniel Autrey and 11 from Tyson Acuff.

The Technicians led CMA (9-8, 5-5 PSL West Town) by a 20-5 margin after one quarter, and 43-12 at the half.

No. 4 DETROIT KING 56, DETROIT HENRY FORD 41

DETROIT — Quarterfinal tournament host Detroit King jumped out to an early lead on Henry Ford, and never looked back, winning 56-41.

Ranked No. 4 in Division 1, the Crusaders (15-2, 9-1 PSL Midtown) advance to Tuesday’s semifinals at Cass Tech, where they’ll face Detroit Renaissance (14-3, 10-0 PSL West Town).

Led by 22 points from Jordan Whitford and 10 from Antonio Cowan, King led Henry Ford (11-7, 8-2 PSL West Town) by a 9-2 margin after one quarter, and 26-11 at the half.

Devon Bryant had all of his team-high 16 points in the second half for Henry Ford.