In Play with Tom Markowski


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Austin Davis has 33 points, 22 rebounds as Onsted remains unbeaten

By: Tom Markowski, January 22, 2016, 10:32 pm



Erie – Coach Kevin Staggs had a good game plan to offset the towering presence of Onsted’s 6-10 senior Austin Davis.

And it worked, just not often enough.

It was just another day at the office for Davis and his teammates. Davis, who signed with Michigan, had 33 points, 22 rebounds, five assists and four blocks to lead Onsted to a 69-49 victory over Erie Mason in a Lenawee County Athletic Association game on Friday before a packed gymnasium as Mason.

Onsted (10-0), ranked No. 6 in Class B, stands alone atop the standings at 7-0 at the halfway point in the league season.

Staggs’ plan was to pull Onsted and Davis away from the basket by shooting, and making, 3-pointers. Mason made 10, seven by senior C.J. Henning, but the Eagles needed to make handful more.

“We tried to shoot the three,” Skaggs said. “We tried to make it tough on them. That’s our game. They’ve got a (6-10) player. We’ve got 6-footers. We’d make a few but they kept on going to Davis.”

And why not?

Davis causes opposing teams and coaches headache after headache. Statistics are one thing but what the score sheet doesn’t show are the amount shots Davis changes and how disruptive he can be when players try to penetrate the lane.

Offensively Davis is efficient. He didn’t take a bad shot and, at least on this night, he didn’t attempt a shot from further than three feet. He was 15-of-19 from the field with six dunks and two tip-ins.

Gabe Richardson chipped in with 13 points and 6-6 junior Skyler Lipinski had 11 points and five rebounds.

Henning had 23 points and Greg Leidel had 11 points and five rebounds for Mason.

“That’s a good team we played,” Davis said. “You can never count them out. At times we lapsed on defense but overall we played well.

“It’s vital to our success that everyone’s involved. In the past teams were able to sag on me. We’ve put in a lot of time to be where we’re at.”

The second quarter was critical in determining the outcome. Onsted opened the quarter with a 14-2 run to take a 28-16 lead. A Davis put-back ended the scoring in the quarter and Onsted led 37-24. The Bulldogs did not commit a turnover in the quarter and held a 13-6 edge in rebounds.

Mason (6-3, 3-3) cut the deficit to 43-37 after a Connor Willis 3-pointer and a basket by Leidel but Onsted 10 straight to push the lead by to 16.

“It’s tough because our kids know their game plan,” Onsted coach Brad Maska said. “They’ll hit (a 3-pointer) even with a hand in their face. The most important part is the next possession. You don’t want them to get on a roll. Typically we’ll get the ball inside.

“Austin was tremendous tonight. H plays so hard. He’s able to run the floor and his outlet passes are right there.”