BOYS BASKETBALL: Clarkston's Foster Loyer earns Mr. Basketball award | North Oakland Sports

BOYS BASKETBALL: Clarkston’s Foster Loyer earns Mr. Basketball award

| March 20, 2018 | Comments (0)



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CLARKSTON — Before a recent practice, Foster Loyer stepped inside the three-point line and calmly swished 17 straight shots before missing.

He started over, then made 16 more in a row before caroming one off the heel of the rim.

That is commonplace for the 6-foot-1 Clarkston senior and Michigan State signee.

With a high basketball IQ and pedigree dating back to he was in middle school, plus a skillset ready for the college game, Loyer has lived up to his reputation of being one of the top 15 high school point guards in the nation. On Monday at the Detroit Free Press building, he was named the 38th recipient of the Hal Schram Michigan Mr. Basketball Award, as presented by the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan.

“It’s an amazing feeling walking into the room and seeing that trophy with your name on it, to see your coaches who have worked with you to be there sharing the moment,” said Loyer. “It’s something that you dream about as a kid. It’s surreal to be here celebrating this with my coaches, my family, my teammates. I am very grateful for the position that everybody put me in and helped me to become the player I am today.”

Loyer, a talented fourth-year starter for the Class A top-ranked Wolves, won this year’s award in a landslide. He collected 3,691 total points, well ahead of East Lansing’s Brandon Johns (2,792). Detroit East English Village Prep’s David Dejulius, Grand Rapids Catholic Central’s Marcus Bingham and Detroit Henry Ford Academy’s Trevion Williams wrapped up the top five in the voting.

Loyer — who should be the first “unanimous” four-time Associated Press Class A All-State First Team choice since the 1980s — has put up impressive numbers this season and throughout his career. Heading into Tuesday’s state quarterfinals game against Flint Carman-Ainsworth, Loyer averaged 27.1 points, 7.0 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 3.5 steals a game for Clarkston (23-1).

Twice in his career has Loyer scored over 40 points in a contest, while he combined for over 60 points in the state semifinals and state finals last season.

Clarkston is 94-6 during Loyer’s career entering the quarterfinals — and he’s missed just one game in his career, a 48-38 victory over Hazel Park on March 1 that clinched the school’s 13th straight OAA Red Division league title. He sat on the sidelines with a minor knee injury, but bounced back and has led Clarkston in scoring throughout the state tournament.

“Foster has always meant a lot to our program,” said veteran Clarkston coach Dan Fife. “Ever since he was a freshman, he has not backed down against anyone. If doesn’t matter how much taller, or bigger or quicker the player who is guarding him or who he is guarding, he never backs down against anyone. His basketball IQ is years ahead of (other players his age) and he’s such a competitor.

“This is so important not only for Foster and his family, but for the program and the kids growing up in the community,” continued Fife. “They watch him play and they start to think that they can be like him one day.”

The Wolves won regional titles during his freshman, junior and senior seasons — they lost in the regional semifinals his sophomore season to Macomb Dakota in double-overtime — and last year they not only reached the Final Four for just the third time in school history, but Loyer led Clarkston to the promised land: The Class A state championship.

He is the second Mr. Basketball that Clarkston has produced. Two decades ago, current Michigan State assistant coach Dane Fife captured the honor in a year (1998) that Clarkston lost in the quarterfinals round. Coach Dan Fife’s oldest son, Dugan Fife, was a Mr. Basketball finalist for the award back in 1992.

Ironically, Loyer should surpass Dane Fife on the school’s all-time scoring list with a trio of impressive games in the final week of the season. Dane Fife and Dugan Fife are the only other Clarkston players to eclipse 2,000 career points in the school’s illustrious history in basketball, which features legions of All-State players over the years that have combined to win 43 league, 40 district and 14 regional titles.

“There’s been so many great players who have won this award over the years, and there has been many great players that have played for Clarkston over the years,” said Loyer. “It’s an honor to be up there on this list.”

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