In the final game of the entire MHSAA Boys Basketball Season on Saturday night at the Breslin Center, New Haven and Ludington faced off to determine the best team in Class B. This game was a defensive battle, but in the end, New Haven emerged victorious 45-36 to earn their first ever Boys Basketball State Championship.
This game was a slow grind in the beginning, and the sloppiness of the contest played into the hands of Ludington. The Orioles advanced to the championship after a sloppy game on Friday led to an upset of River Rouge. The two teams combined to shoot just 30% in the first quarter, and the Orioles led 11-7.
In the next two quarters, this game went back and forth as the pace of play changed. When the game got methodical in terms of offensive efficiency, Ludington took advantage, and they led as large as eight points in the second quarter. When the pace picked up, usually as New Haven started to apply the pressure defensively, much like Flint Beecher in Class C, the Rockets took off.
With 5:15 left to play, Ludington drew an offensive foul to gain possession, and they trailed by just one point. Over the next two minutes, the Orioles managed the pressure of New Haven, but they missed five layups. On the other end, New Haven converted their opportunities into eight points, and as a result it was out of reach. New Haven expanded the lead to as large as thirteen before they went to their bench.
The Rockets were led by sophomore Romeo Weems, who finished today with nineteen points on five of six shooting. Weems also added ten rebounds in the win. Eric Williams Jr also had a solid game as he finished today with fourteen points and seven rebounds.
Not to be lost in a losing effort should be the play of Calvin Hackert. In his final high school game, Hackert scored sixteen points to lead the Orioles. Sam LaDuke also reached double figures in Saturday’s game with ten points.