DETROIT, Michigan -- The University of Detroit Jesuit Cubs will meet up with the De La Salle Pilots on Sunday at Callahan Hall in Detroit, Michigan for a chance at the Michigan Catholic High School League A-B title.
Player to Watch: Cassius Winston
Every Michigander who is involved in high school basketball, or anyone interested in high school basketball recruiting knows Cassius Winston, who is committed to play basketball for Michigan State University. It is safe to say that the senior, on his birthday, will be a difference maker in Sunday's game at 3:00 PM ET.
The point guard for the Cubs (18-0) has been the starter at his high school for the past four years, and through the hard work has become a four-star recruit ranked 29th overall. Winston has gotten to this elite point for also playing Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) basketball for The Family in Detroit, where players such as Miles Bridges, Brailen Neely, and Josh Jackson have put in work.
The Cubs have fell short of a Michigan High School Athletic Association Class A championship the last two years at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, Michigan. This year with the number one team in the state of Michigan are the heavy favorite. U-D Jesuit has built a ton of momentum throughout the season and the best way to carry it would be a Catholic High School League championship over De La Salle.
De La Salle lost embarrassingly to U-D Jesuit in the first duel between the two parties, 67-46. The next game, however, was a bit closer with the Pilots losing by just four points.
How Can the Pilots Pull Off the Upset?
If the Pilots (10-5) would like to compete in this game they will most likely have to have their shot from behind the arc fall, especially from their off guards. Kevin McKay, who is committed to play basketball at Central Michigan University, will look to slow the game down and try to keep De La Salle close with U-D Jesuit throughout the contest.
McKay scored a layup in the Catholic League semifinal game against the Loyola Bulldogs to give De La Salle a one point lead, which turned out to be the game winner in a 53-52 win for the Pilots. McKay finished the game with a team-high 17 points.
“We have been the wounded warriors but we played like warriors at the end and now we got a chance to play U of D,” De La Salle coach Greg Esler said after the semifinal win over Loyola. “Obviously we’re going to have to play a lot better than we did tonight, but we’ll be ready to go Sunday.”
U-D Jesuit Forward Ike Eke Will Be Tough to Handle at 6-foot-9
De La Salle might have some trouble getting the ball down low due to the 6-foot-9 presence of junior forward Ike Eke. The Cubs, who have a very deep bench, will use freshman Julian Dozier and Zach Winston, a sophomore, to their advantage throughout the brawl. U-D Jesuit also has brothers Elijah Collins and Gary Collins, both playing the guard position.
As long as the Cubs stick to the regular game plan, the team should have no problem getting the win. However, do not sleep on the Pilots because they have the ability to upset. Who will be crowned the winner? Only time will tell.