Detroit Henry Ford reaches final again
East Lansing – Williamston upset some of the top-ranked teams in the tournament on its way to the Breslin Center.
First there was No. 6-ranked Lansing Catholic Central in a district final. Top-ranked and defending champion Wyoming Godwin Heights was defeated by Williamston in overtime in a region semifinal and No. 5-ranked River Rouge lost to Williamston in Tuesday’s quarterfinal.
Williamston’s role as a giant-killer ended with a thud on Friday as No. 3-ranked Detroit Henry Ford shot past the Hornets, 70-48, in a Class B semifinal on Friday.
Henry Ford (19-6), which lost in the final to Godwin Heights in the final last season, never trailed and led 43-23 at halftime. The Trojans then scored the first seven points of the second half.
The Trojans will play Stevensville Lakeshore (20-7) for the title on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
The Trojans use a four-guard offense and Williamston couldn’t keep pace with Henry Ford’s quick and experienced backcourt.
Riley Lewis did his best to keep Williamston in the game as the senior, who’s headed to Hope College, had 32 points. No other Williamston player had more than five.
James Towns, a senior who remains uncommitted, is Henry Ford’s point guard and the one who makes the Trojans go, had 17 points, four rebounds, three assists and three steals.
Towns had plenty of help. Kavon Bey, who at 6-4 is Henry Ford’s only interior player, had 21 points and eight rebounds, and Jeremy Crawley had 14 points.
“It was a real passionate game for us,” Henry Ford coach Ken Flowers said. “We want to get back (to the finals). James is the backbone of our team. He came out with passion and will the team. He’s consistent. I’m biased but I think he’s the best guard in the state.”
The Trojans shot extremely well from the field. They were 7-of-11 (63.6 percent) from 3-point range and 28-of-48 (58.3) overall.
“We shot a lot of balls the last few days,” Flowers said. “We didn’t do a whole lot of competitive stuff.”
Bey had perhaps his best game. He barely saw playing time last season and has been the team’s most improved player. His previous high was 16 points.
“I just came out and played for my team and play my role,” he said.
When asked what his role was Bey said rebounds. He’s more versatile than that.
Williamston interim coach Tom Lewis, Riley’s father, said when looking at film of Henry Ford’s quarterfinal victory over New Haven, Bey was a concern.
“I wrote (Bey) attacks the basket over and over again in my notes,” Tom Lewis said. “We needed to be aware of that.”
It’s a season of emotions for Williamston (21-4). At times a freshman (Sean Cobb) and two sophomores would be in the starting lineup. During the districts coach Jason Bauer was diagnosed with two tumors on his brain. They were surgically removed and Bauer recovered well enough to be on the bench on Friday. The players wore t-shirts with ‘Bauer Strong’ on them.