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BOYS BASKETBALL: Top-ranked Clarkston soars past No. 2 Hazel Park

| January 30, 2018 | Comments (0)

BY DAN STICKRADT

SENIOR EDITOR

dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com

Twitter: @LocalSportsFans

HAZEL PARK — For the first time in its illustrious 24-year history, the Oakland Activities Association welcomed the rare commodity of featuring a basketball game that consisted of the top two teams in the Associated Press Class A state rankings.

Top-ranked Clarkston made sure there was no contest Tuesday night at Hazel Park.

The defending Class A state champion Wolves built a 21-point lead by the mid-point of the second quarter and cruised to a convincing 70-39 OAA Red Division victory over host Hazel Park.

Mr. Basketball candidate and Michigan State-bound senior guard Foster Boyer scored 34 points with nine rebounds and five assists, leading three Wolves in double figures.

Taylor Currie, a 6-foot-9 senior center headed for Wisconsin, added 18 points, 15 rebounds and five blocks, while senior CJ Robinson chipped in with 13 points, five rebounds and three assists for Clarkston (12-1, 7-0).

“I was excited for this game. The whole team was excited. Hazel Park is a great team and they have been climbing the past few years. But we were really ready,” said Currie. “With all of our seniors, we just came out and we were really locked in. Our guards did a great job getting the ball inside, and I was able to get position inside. We came out and were ready to play.”

Playing in several big games the past four years aided Clarkston’s effort.

“I liked our effort. I really feel like (past games) really helped us, just as it will help (Hazel Park) down the road,” noted Clarkston coach Dan Fife. “With all of the noise in here, the crowd and all the stuff involved — it is good for both teams.”

Clarkston played every bit like a nationally-ranked and defending state championship ball club, setting the tone early with the inside play of Currie. The Wolves used a 20-0 run from 2:21 mark of the first quarter until there was 4:39 remaining in the second frame to blow the game open.

By that time, Clarkston led 31-6 and Hazel Park (11-1, 6-1) could never recover.

“Their defense — they are good,” sighed Hazel Park coach Brandon Barrett. “They really get after it. And when you have a player like Foster Loyer and a 6-9 kid inside like Currie, they are tough to stop. Having a 6-9 player like him is a dream. They are blessed. We really had no one who could stop him inside there.”

The Wolves finished the night shooting an impressive 23-for-43 from the floor (53.5 percent) and led by as many as 32 points in the second half. Clarkston held a 37-28 edge on the boards and had 16 assists on 23 made baskets.

The Wolves led 18-6 after the first quarter, 37-16 at the half and 51-26 through three quarters, outscoring the previously-unbeaten Vikings in all four periods en route to the convincing win.

Senior Khari Adams led Hazel Park with 14 points, nine rebounds and three blocks. Senior Kyle Washington added eight points and six rebounds and senior Julian Jones also chipped in with eight points for the Vikings.

Hazel Park was held to a horrid 16-for-64 shooting night (25 percent), including just 2-of-21 from three-point range (9.5 percent).

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Category: Basketball, Clarkston, Colleges / Other, Editor's Column, Featured Articles, Prep Wraps, Sport, Top Stories, Uncategorized

About Dan Stickradt: DAN STICKRADT | SENIOR EDITOR dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com View author profile.

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