**ARTICLE BY JOSH LONGSTRETH**
DOUBLE DRIBBLE: BOYS BASKETBALL DISTRICT FINALS ECAP AND REGIONAL SEMIFINAL PREVIEW
District 9 hosted by Rockford
- Rockford advances to regionals after the Rams knocked off Northview in what was an absolute battle. Rockford would pull out a nail-biter, 53-49. Caden Pokorzynski (14 points) and Andrew Landis (13 points) led the Rams. Northview was led by Tyran Thomas who finished with 16. Parker Swartz added 12.
District 11 hosted by Zeeland East
- Hudsonville moves on to regional as they knocked off Zeeland West, 59-51. Mason Dykstra led the Eagles with 16 points. Brayden Szamrej added 13. Griffin Baker finished with 10. Merritt Alderink paced Zeeland West with 17. Luke Bakker helped with 12. Hudsonville was able to hold on as it was a tight battle throughout with the Eagles leading just 29-20 at the half.
District 12 hosted by Middleville Thornapple Kellogg
- East Kentwood cruised past Byron Center to secure a district title, 62-45.
District 10 hosted by Coopersville
- Muskegon got into a tough battle with Reeths-Puffer but would come away with the win, 51-47.
Regional 3 hosted by Holland West Ottawa
Monday 5:30 – Rockford (18-7) VS Hudsonville (17-7)
The Rams haven’t had it easy in the tournament as they’ve been tested the last couple games. But they continue to find ways to get it done led by their defense. Defense travels and Rockford is playing some of their best ball of the season.
Hudsonville knows all about those close battles. They’ve had two already against the Rams falling by just a total of four points total. They’ll have their chance again and the Eagles have a different outcome on their mind.
Monday 7:00 – East Kentwood (18-6) VS Muskegon (22-2)
There might not be a hotter team than the Falcons right now. East Kentwood comes in off a path where they dominated two games to take down a district title. They’ll be up against a new force this time as they look to get off to another quick start for a chance at a regional title.
You can’t say enough about the Muskegon Big Reds. They come in with many thinking they’re one of the best in the state. And they aren’t wrong. Muskegon has showed it time and time again all season. They’ll need to make sure that they come out with the same urgency to try and take all the momentum early and often against East Kentwood.
District 13 hosted by Kalamazoo Loy Norrix
- Kalamazoo Central beat Mattawan, 64-43. Central was able to control the game all night against a very good Wildcats team.
Regional 4 hosted by DeWitt
Monday 5:30 – Kalamazoo Central (20-3) VS East Lansing (14-9)
Sometimes the best comes out in a team when they’re faced against a big opposition. Central faced that in Mattawan in their district title game and they looked every part of a potential state champion. Led by Hutch Ward, they have shown they can beat teams offensively or defensively all season. Now they’re looking to ride right into a regional title game in any way they know how.
The Trojans of East Lansing cruised in their district title game. They, too, have shown they can beat you in a variety of ways this season. Mixed with veteran leadership and young talent, the Trojans are putting it together at the right time.
Monday 7:00 – Holt (16-9) VS Battle Creek Central (16-7)
District 35 hosted by Big Rapids
- Hart came up short against a determined Cadillac bunch, falling to the Vikings 32-56. In one of the best seasons for the Pirates, it just wouldn’t be there night as Cadillac had nearly everything going their way. Senior Parker Hovey averaged nearly 25 points per game for Hart on the season.
District 41 hosted by Comstock Park
- Fremont continues playing Cinderella as they knock off Sparta, 57-55. Packers head coach Adam Bowen was beyond happy for his bunch, “It was a very special night for our team and our program. I am so proud of how our team competed and fought. We played one of our best games of the season against a very good Sparta team. This was a great night and a memory that this team will have forever”. Jordon McDonald had a big night for Fremont to finish with 21 points and 12 rebounds. Gavin Richards was big with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Chaz Miller finished with 8 points and 8 assists.
District 43 hosted by Wyoming Godwin Heights
- Hudsonville Unity Christian is making a regional trip as they knock off Godwin Heights, 73-60. The Saders had their offense going all night but had some big stops on the defensive end when it mattered most.
District 44 hosted by Forest Hills Eastern
- Grand Rapids Christian took down a very good Ionia team, 51-36.
District 42 hosted by Fruitport
- Spring Lake took their district in a win over Fruitport, 45-37.
Regional 11 hosted by Hudsonville Unity Christian
Monday 5:30 – Fremont (13-11) VS Hudsonville Unity Christian (16-9)
Unity Christian continues to be impressive in the post-season. The Saders have especially had their offense on display as they have simply been wearing teams out throughout. The biggest being over a very good Catholic Central team. Unity Christian looks to continue their success by just finding ways to win tight contests.
Monday 7:00 – Grand Rapids Christian (19-5) VS Spring Lake (14-8)
The Eagles are getting it done on both sides of the floor in the tournament. A fairly young team, they haven’t shown that at crucial times all season as this isn’t new for the Eagles. It’s a team that continues to show why they might be taking a couple more titles home.
Spring Lakers is putting together an impressive run for their program. Up and down for a lot of the season, it’s clear that they’re battle tested and it’s paying dividends. If they can get off to a solid start against the Eagles, their story might continue even deeper into March.
District 45 hosted by Plainwell
- Grand Rapids South Christian has their remarkable season continue as they knocked off Otsego, 64-29. The Sailors have made things look quite easy during the tournament.
District 46 hosted by Hamilton
- Hamilton continues their impressive season by defeating Allegan, 80-51.
Regional 12 hosted by Vicksburg
Monday 5:30 – Grand Rapids South Christian (21-3) VS Niles (15-10)
It’s been a remarkable season for the Sailors. But they are clearly a team that has bigger things on their mind. The question is how they respond if they get into a tight battle with their season on the line. It shouldn’t matter, this is a team that has the wherewithal to come up big in crunch time.
If you’re looking for a team that can score with South Christian, it might just be the Vikings. They’re offense has been on for much of the season. But can their defense get crucial stops when needed. On their best run of the season, they’ll be confident that they can.
Monday 7:00 – Marshall (19-5) VS Hamilton (21-4)
Marshall has had things quite easy in the tournament. They have been able to jump on teams and not have any let downs. With an experienced group, they know they can go toe to toe with anyone.
The Hawkeyes have been impressive on both ends this season. Now Hamilton seems to be playing their best ball of the season and are riding on nothing but momentum. They expect that it’s their experience that will keep them moving deeper into March.
District 76 hosted by Pewamo-Westphalia
- NorthPointe Christian fell to Pewamo-Westphalia, 43-49. The Mustangs Kayden Bird would get his 1,000th career point in his final game.
District 75 hosted by Fennville
- Grandville Calvin Christian won a tight battle with Covenant Christian, 43-39. The Squires have now won back-to-back district titles.
District 74 hosted by Holton
- North Muskegon rolls over Kent City, 61-34. The Norse had it going early and often as they cruised into the locker room with a 32-10 lead at the half. Lamarkis Graham had a big game with 16 points and 5 rebounds. Jaxon Lisinski added 4 points. Sam Gallo pitched in 10 points and 7 rebounds. Adam Dugener finished with 10 points. Jaret Jaramillo (14 points) and Seth Vanderwest (10 points) led the Eagles.
Regional 19 hosted by Kent City
Monday 5:30 – Blanchard Montabella (22-2) VS Grandville Calvin Christian (23-1)
Montabella has been on cruise control for much of the year as they continue to add to their great season. The Mustangs can beat you in a variety of ways and they’ve proven that in the tournament.
What a year it has been for the Squires. A program that continues to put monumental seasons together, they don’t appear to be stopping any time soon. They have the makeup of a team that could be playing into next week.
Monday 7:00 – Pewamo-Westphalia (17-6) VS North Muskegon (19-4)
The Pirates come in high on confidence as they beat a very solid NorthPointe team their last time out. They have a variety of guys that can get it done and a proven scorer in Jamison Eklund who can get it going at any time.
North Muskegon might be running under the radar to some, but the Norse have looked like one of the best in the state. Even with a slow start you never know when they can jump on you. They have multiple guys that can hurt you.