Photo courtesy of Lou Murray

The MHSAA Basketball Districts begin this week. Our team at MSR will have several districts broadcast live. Previews of those districts, and schedules for other area districts, can be found below:



Cedar Springs (4-18) v Greenville (13-9)


Reeths-Puffer (19-3) v Mona Shores (14-8)

Cedar Springs/Greenville winner vs Muskegon (19-2)

This region features three heavy hitters on the Lakeshore in Muskegon, Puffer and Mona Shores. The Rockets swept the Sailors in the regular season, but split the season matchups against the Big Reds. It would not be a surprise if we had a grudge match for the district finals between Reeths Puffer and Muskegon.




Holland (8-14) vs West Ottawa (5-17)


Grand Haven (11-11) vs Zeeland East (9-13)

Zeeland West (15-7) vs Holland/WO winner

With Mr. Basketball finalist Merritt Alderink on their squad, as well as entering the postseason as the only team in this district with a winning record, the Dux are the heavy favorites in District 5. There are several teams looking to play spoiler this week.



By: Nate Dreyer

West Michigan is loaded with star-studded districts with teams that have one or more state title contenders, and the division one district being held at Forest Hills Northern features the mix of elite teams and elite players with championship aspirations that helps this one stand out from the rest.

Michigan Sports Radio will be there live all week to cover the action live, as the likes of O-K Red Champ, Rockford and state-ranked Northview headline the way with plenty of other top-flight contenders looking for the start of their own March run to glory.


Forest Hills Northern (7-15)  vs. Grand Rapids Union (0-20)

The District host, FHN, starts out their MHSAA tournament with struggling Grand Rapids Union, the Red Hawks have struggled massively in 2023-24, as they are 0-20 on the year and looking for a big upset to continue their season. Junior 6’2 wing JuJuan Nickens is a super athletic player that will be leaned on often for Union on both ends of the floor.

Forest Hills Northern closed their season with three losses to close at 7-15 on the season, but their final game of the year was a tight only two-point loss to Byron Center, who has been the best team in the GR-area over the past month. Head Coach Joe Soules has looked to a strong group of seniors to lead the way in the close O-K White this year, but talented sophomore Kyle Brown has started to take a lot of headlines, as the 6 ‘1 shooting guard and wing has been in a  growing role. He knocked down a couple of triples and had eight points vs. Byron Center on Friday. 

Coopersville (18-3) vs. Kenowa Hills (8-14)

Coopersville is the leading candidate to look for in this district as a team that could be set to go on a bit of a cinderella run and pull of some upsets, they start with Kenowa Hills – who put together a bit of a retool year in 2024 and are gearing up for next year with some young talent… but not after they try to make some noise in March (and first February) this year.

The Knights feature three freshman and six more underclassmen on their 2024 roster, led by second year starting point guard Derek Chapin, who was a part of last year’s starting unit as a freshman as well. They will need some big performances out of their young players if they can pull off the Monday Upset.

Coopersville only lost three times this year, with two of which coming to D2 state championship contender and O-K Blue Champion, Unity Christian. The Broncos play a unique and tricky style of basketball featuring zone defense and dribble drive offense that is methodical and frustrating to opponents. The skill they add to that style only makes things tougher on the other side. Gabe VanSickle is an immovable post presence that will be playing football on the offensive line for Ryan Day and Ohio State next season, and Porter Kretschman is a very talented 2-way wing threat that can lead the way all over the floor. Add in the floor spacing and shooting of Eli Spencer, who hit a school-record 9 threes vs. Hamilton in February, and you’ve got a hyper deadly mix that will be tough to handle for Kenowa Hills… Or any other future opponents.


Northview (16-5) vs. FHN/GR Union

David Chana’s Wildcats wait for the winner of host FHN and GR Union in the second round, the ‘Cats dropped a couple of their final week games down the stretch to GR Christian and Byron Center, but they are among the most talented teams in West Michigan regardless, and their tough, methodical and skill vs. skill approach will make them a true threat to go on a run in the district and beyond, if they are able to survive the gauntlet at FHN first.

Northview features three division one players with more young talent that is expected to join those ranks in the years coming. E.J. Ryans is a terrific leader and point guard that is committed to Western Michigan, his younger brother, (sophomore) Cam is a physical specimen at 6 ‘4 and can defend and score across multiple positions and multiple levels – he recently picked up an offer from Iowa State. And Brady Swartz, a 6 ‘6’’ junior, has had a huge season establishing himself as one of GR’s best shooters and scorers – along with top tier D2 offers, he recently added a WMU offer and other D1 interest.

It will be a real test for either of the possible upset seekers if they are going to be able to continue their season.

Rockford (18-4) vs. Coopersville/Kenowa Hills

Kyle Clough’s Rams captured the loaded O-K Red Championship again in 2024 and positioned themselves as a real threat to knock off the ‘Cats and go on a March run to remember. The Rams have an ability to score, handle the ball, and defend at practically every spot on the floor and have looked to a pair of sophomores in their starting lineup to help push them over the top alongside multi-year leaders, like seniors Drake Irwin and Andrew Landis. 

Dylan Gross, a sophomore guard, started the season coming off the bench, but watched as his play became impossible to ignore. Already one of the team’s (and area’s) best shooters, Gross is an aggressive and confident scorer that can impact the game in numerous ways. Jake Bascom is a 6 ‘4 sophomore forward that is one of the most talented players that coach Clough has had at Rockford – His athletic ability in the post could serve as a mismatch for whoever the Rams play.

The expectation would be to see Coopersville and Rockford here, this is a game that could put the Rams on more of an upset watch than many may expect. The Broncos have an ability to play a tricky zone and ‘slop’ the game up and can then lean on some of their raw size and senior toughness to counter the Rams attack. In general, this game could become a low-scoring one, not just because both teams play A+ defense, but if Coopersville also effectively walls up their zone, forces a few turnovers and slows the Rams, both teams could become very methodical in their approach.


The expected match-up may be the headline of the night on Friday (which is crazy to say considering the match-ups also expected in D2 at Unity Christian and D1 at Byron Center). Rockford and Northview have not played yet this year, but have become familiar with each other in the playoffs and other meetings as next-door rivals in the past.

Both teams have plenty of talent, so look to the seniors and look to the coaches to try and get the upper hand here. E.J. Ryans will have to run an effective point for the Wildcats vs. the aggressive Rockford defense that will be set up to speed them up. Meanwhile Andrew Landis may be unmatched as a deep-range shooter in the area, his ability to shoot over top of the aggressive and grinding Wildcats defense will be key.

The coaches, two of the area’s best tacticians, would also have a huge match-up here. Look to coach Clough and the Rams to maybe go to some full court zone traps and half court zone defense to throw the ‘Cats off their game and try to speed some things up or further slow the Wildcat’s down and out of a rhythm. The Wildcats can shoot the basketball effectively and will need to go to an efficient 3-point game over top of the zone and smaller Ram defenders to counter that.  

Meanwhile the big, grinding Wildcats will look to slow things down and try to win in one-on-one battles on both ends of the floor here. Regardless, this would be a great match-up to see what each coach has up their sleeve.

And… if we see Coopersville pull the upset on the Rams, Northview better be ready to handle an attack that they really haven’t seen the likes of this year, a red-hot Coopersville team off a possible upset Wednesday would be one of the last things you would want to see on Friday – they have been a disrespected team by some this year (even somewhat by this article already matching up the Rams and Wildcats before), but Coopersville is a team truly built with what it takes to win in March with IQ, senior leaders, and a unique style of play.

Michigan Sports Radio is your home for everything across a loaded district week in the Grand Rapids and West Michigan area this week. Including this district where you will be able to tune into games every single night from FHN, through what will be one of the most anticipated finals – regardless of the ultimate match-up!



By: Nate Dreyer

In terms of depth of talent and teams, the division one district being played at Byron Center may reign supreme over all others in the area. As there are at least four teams that come in truly thinking they have a shot to take this tough district and then look well-equipped to go on a run following that, as they will advance on to the loaded D1 region at East Kentwood the week following.

One note in this district, the two Monday games will be being played at home gyms, with Hudsonville and Jenison hosting those games, before play shifts to Byron Center on Wednesday.


Wyoming (6-16) @ Hudsonville (15-7)

Hudsonville has had an up-and-down season, as one of the pre-season favorites to take the O-K Red ultimately finished tied for 3rd with Grandville in the conference, but still picked up some big wins along the way, to go along with some unexpected upset losses – The Eagles still remain as strong of a contender as ever to win a district title for the second straight year and look to advance to at least as far as they did last year, ahead to the regional final. 

The Eagles will always look to senior point guard Brayden Szjamrej to lead the team on both ends of the floor, this is now his fourth March starting at PG for the Eagles and his big play last year has already delivered a district crown in the past and likely could again.

Wyoming presents one of the trickiest outs and a real upset threat in any game they play, legendary coach Thom VanderKlay has a team that only won 6 games their year, but, they have a ‘run-and-jump’ attack that is likely the fastest the area (the state?) has to offer. You better be ready to run and play a style you aren’t used to if you are to survive VanderKlay’s pack of Wolves. 

Grandville (15-7) @ Jenison (2-20)

Coach Desmond Young’s Bulldogs finished a bit up-and-down after making the conference season turn a month ago with a true chance to win the title, a tough loss on senior night to Hudsonville wrapped up a season where they ultimately dropped seven games, but have huge notable wins over Unity Christian, Byron Center, and Hudsonville on their report card.

They travel to Jenision, who only won twice this season for a 1st-year coaching staff looking to reestablish a program that advanced to Wednesday and nearly came back to steal a game vs. Hudsonville last year. Sophomore Pierce Ginzer is a terrific all-around athlete that has been getting better as the season has gone on, the Bulldogs will need to handle him to avoid an upset at the hands of their cross-town rival.

Grandville’s Cam Regnerus is a GVSU signee that is quite likely West Michigan’s best post defender, but, it’s been is growing offensive game both inside and out that has been exciting for Bulldogs fans and has had them dreaming of a March run – Cam already has 2 buzzer-beating game-winning-shots this year, so he’s proven an ability to get it done in the clutch.


Byron Center (17-5) vs. Hudsonville/Wyoming

Byron Center has been West Michigan’s hottest team the last month, that point has become almost inarguable, as coach Joe Rodriguez’s Bulldogs have won 11-straight, including wins over D2’s #1 team in the state Grand Rapids Christian, and D1 power Northview. 

Regardless who sees the Bulldogs, they will have to handle the ability of D1 prospect Camden Karel, at 6’9”, Karel can play at all three levels on offense and is an elite post defender – a mismatch that few are able to counter, especially with how well he has been playing down the stretch.

The Bulldogs ability to play a full-court game at speed and also slow things down in the half court is key, but a lot of their success has come when they are pressuring opponents and turning up the wick down the stretch in a  way they didn’t early in the year when they were a .500 team before this 11-game, all-encompassing win streak.

The likely match-up with Hudsonville would create an interesting battle of styles and paces, a Wyoming Monday upset, and we may wind up seeing Byron Center becoming more of the zone-based and slightly slower team in the matchup, versus the running-and-gunning Wolves.

East Kentwood (15-7) vs. Grandville/Jenison

Coach Mike Thomas is a three-time state champion, and at their peak, his Falcons have a real chance to make that four. The question for the Falcons will be if they are able to play their best every night for the entire district run and beyond. Their results the last two weeks show some of the jekyll & hyde season they have had. 

After picking up a nearly 40-point win over Grandville two weeks ago they went on a massive run taking down Rockford, Hudsonville, and Jenison  – all in big fashion. EK then closed the regular season by falling in upset fashion to Grand Haven 46-43, on Kentwood’s home floor. If the Falcons own future-D1 dynamic wing Christian Humphrey-Rembert and their loaded back court is able to hit their shots from deep and create turnovers on every square inch of the floor, they may be truly unbeatable… But, if those shots don’t fall and their attack gets slowed down, an upset may be brewing.

Expect to see Grandville in this game, the Bulldogs beat the Falcons once in 2023, but fell both times this year. The ‘Dawgs have effectively used a half court zone to slow down the Falcons in the past, if they are able to do that again while hitting their shots – the Bulldogs have the talent and pedigree to win this one.

Grandville will need to lean on their confident freshman point guard, Carter Wade, playing his best vs. the Falcons, if they are going to be able to handle the pressure and turn some of that pressure into easy baskets of their own. 


There truly is a combination of four teams here that would not be a big suprise to see in the final. The bye-earning favorites of Byron Center and East Kentwood are two of the teams playing the best basketball anywhere right now (even including EK’s loss Friday). The matchup of Karel and Humphrey-Rembert is one to absolutely circle over-and-over again, they are the same size, with a very similar skill set and each will be division one stand-outs at the next level. 

Hudsonville, like EK, were district champions last year, they have the pedigree to advance past Byron Center and see a meet-up with a team that they split with this year – a statement true of either Grandville or East Kentwood in that case.

The Bulldogs fell twice to EK, but they are the only team here that has seen Byron Center – they won that game back in December. Both teams were different at that point, but these Bulldogs have already shown their ability to beat the other Bulldogs. If they get Hudsonville, a rematch of the thrilling 2019 district final between those two rivals could provide an unreal atmosphere and an all-time rubber-match. 

In total, just draw up your own match-ups that you expect and/or hope to see here and you may see it. This district is a toss-up and the winner will be battle-tested with at least two very (very) good wins already in their back pocket before they head off to region play.

We’ve got games every night in this district, as the GAME NIGHT on MI Sports Radio crew will have things covered throughout at Byron Center. Monday, check out coverage from Jenison for the border-war Grandville/Jenison rivalry, before things transition to B.C., where we will have both semis games live and then the final, live, on Friday.

All of those games will be offered with MGN on MSR’s ‘Radio+’ converge, featuring ‘in-the-booth’ cam, interactive graphics, live player scoring, team info scroll, and much more along with the radio call – an innovative approach to a radio broadcast, not matched anywhere else – only on GAME NIGHT and!




Ottawa Hills (12-10) vs Middleville (10-12)

Lowell (6-15) vs East Grand Rapids (5-16)



Forest Hills Central (15-7) vs Ottawa Hills/Middleville winner

Caledonia (11-11) vs Lowell/East Grand Rapids winner

It has been a frustrating season for rivals East Grand Rapids and Lowell. One of those squads will earn a playoff victory, which gives them a shot at host Caledonia. The Fighting Scots have waited over 30 years since their last district title. This may be their best shot in a decade, as they match up well favorably in the semifinals. Derrick King’s Bengals will be a tough contender in this district, and everyone knows that the George family has a long history of success at FHC in the district rounds. Though this district may not have a State Championship contender, it may be one of the most exciting to follow in the district rounds.




Allendale (11-11) vs Comstock Park (8-14)


Wyoming Lee (15-5) vs West Catholic (7-14)

GR Catholic Central (16-5) vs Allendale/CP winner

The Cougars enter this week as the proverbial favorites, with Mr. Basketball finalist Durral Brooks leading their offensive attack. Despite his many accolades, he may not finish this district week with the most points scored. Marc Whitfield has been an explosive scorer for the Legends this winter, and will look to help the Alliance League champions continue their historic season. The host Falcons will look to surprise their City League rivals, provided they can get past Wyoming Lee.




Belding (15-7) vs Lakewood (4-18)

West Michigan Aviation Academy (12-10) vs Forest Hills Eastern (11-11)


Portland (13-7) vs Belding/Lakewood winner

Ionia (10-12) vs WMAA/FHE winner




Grand River Prep (13-6) vs Kelloggsville (2-20)

Godwin Heights (16-5) vs South Christian (17-5)


Grand Rapids Christian (20-2) vs GR Prep/Kelloggsville winner

Unity Christian (18-4) vs Godwin/South Christian winner

This district is littered with historic programs and elite basketball talent. With five teams entering with at least 13 wins, this will be must-watch basketball every night. It should be noted that in the regular season, South Christian defeated Unity, but lost to GRC.




Hastings (8-13) vs Hopkins (7-15)


Hamilton (10-12) vs Wayland (3-19)

Holland Christian (13-9) vs Hastings/Hopkins winner