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Howell — Tony Honkala and Bobby Samples showed their senior leadership Friday night in helping Howell get off to a fast start in its 59-54 Kensington Lakes Athletic Association win over Plymouth.

Howell — which advanced to the Division 1 state semifinals last season — made its first seven shots to take an 18-6 lead midway through the opening quarter and led the rest of the way to improve to 5-1.

Honkala, Samples, Peyton Ward and JD Dell all made 3-pointers during the pivotal 18-6 run to set the tempo and show their ability to hit from the perimeter as well as work the ball inside to get baskets.

“That was a great start,” said Samples who scored 17. “We just went out there and executed the game plan and happened to hit some shots. We have a lot of kids who can space the floor out and hit some threes and it helps a lot for kids like Tony and I to drive to the basket.

“What we need to do better was play some defense there and help down on those bigs. We did a poor job on that, got a little better towards the third quarter, but the fourth quarter killed us.”

Honkala, a 6-foot-2 guard who averages 18.6 points, scored 21, including 13 in the first half on 5-of-10 shooting to help Howell take a 35-23 halftime lead.

Honkala was at his best when he made a pair of free throws, then found Ward for a 3-pointer, followed by getting a steal which led to Samples’ transition basket to conclude a 7-0 run to open up a 35-20 cushion after Plymouth pulled within eight.

Howell led 50-37 after three with Honkala (19 points on 8-of-14 shooting) and Samples (17 points, 7-of-10 shooting) combining for 36 points on 15-of-24 shooting.

Samples made a pair of 3-pointers and Honkala connected on a fallaway jumper during a 9-3 run to close out the quarter after Plymouth cut the deficit to 41-34.

Plymouth made things interesting in the final quarter when it made three 3-pointers, two from Ethan Bentley while 6-7 Matt MacLellan and 6-3 Jacob Smith did some damage inside during a 15-5 run to pull within 55-52 with 2:30 remaining.

But, Plymouth missed four free throws and three 3-pointers in the final two minutes to prevent the comeback with Dell making two free throws with 11.8 seconds remaining after his teammates missed the front end of two 1-and-1 opportunities.

MacLellan scored 19 for Plymouth (3-3) while Smith had 14 points and Bentley 12, making 4-of-6 3-pointers.

Samples isn’t bothered that Howell is not ranked despite its strong start, including a season-opening win over Okemos, which also advanced to the state semifinals last season.

“We don’t worry about it too much, just go out and practice and work as hard as we can, then try to show it in the games,” Samples said. “We’ll continue to get better and hopefully are ranking will improve.”

Detroit Cristo Rey goes 7-0

Detroit Cristo Rey advanced to a 7-0 start with a 75-60 win over Allen Park Cabrini, and head coach Brandon Peoples is very happy with that.

But he's even happier with the way that his team has "trusted" each other during the winning streak that's started the season, Peoples said after Friday's win.

"Our commitment to playing team basketball is noticed every night," Peoples said. "We've got three principles. We worry about our attitude, our discipline, and our trust, and I think our trust is showing."

Cristo Rey (7-0, 2-0 Catholic Intersectional #2) got 31 points and four steals from junior guard Alonzo Fears and Satchel Love added 12 and nine rebounds. Fabi Oguin scored 17 for Cabrini (0-6, 1-2).

Fears reaped the benefits of Cristo Rey's high-energy defense that forced 19 steals and opened the floodgates for points in transition.

"Getting out in transition, finding him for open shots was huge for us tonight," Peoples said. "We wanted to take away their ball-handlers early so we can score in transition."

Though, the same could be said for most game plans thrown together by Peoples for his Cristo Rey squad, which starts four guards and has beaten teams with its quickness all season long.

"We do transition every day at practice," Peoples said. "It's always at the top of our list. We're young, athletic, and we like to run the floor."

Transition points also came by way of Love and Jordan Taylor cleaning the boards, another major point of emphasis.

"Our guys hitting the glass initiates it," Peoples added. "It's almost becoming second nature to them to automatically look up in transition.

More boys basketball

Allen Park Inter-City Baptist 45, Auburn Hills Oakland Christian 39: Andrew Conn scored 16 and Ethan Cividini had 14 for Baptist (3-3, 1-0 MIAC Blue). Oakland Christian is 5-1, 0-1.

Belleville 76, Livonia Churchill 40:0 points and six assists for Belleville (3-1, 2-0 KLAA East). Chase Fenn scored 13 and Chase Loving scored 13 for Livonia (1-5, 0-2).  

Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood 63, Marine City Cardinal Mooney 50: Cam Garner scored 19, Jordan Roebuck 18 and Sam Hauxwell 12 for Cranbrook-Kingswood (6-1). Cardinal Mooney is 3-3.

Dearborn Edsel Ford 67, Taylor 66: Romi Salem had 29 points, 10 assists and 6 steals for Edsel Ford (2-5, 1-2 Downriver). Jeremy Benson Jr. had 19 for Taylor (2-2, 1-2). 

Dearborn Heights Crestwood 75, Garden City 19: Mustafa Almuna scored 14, Moe Sobh nine and Ali Bazzi eight for Crestwood (3-1, 2-0 Western Wayne). Zach Russell scored eight for Garden City (0-5, 0-3).

Detroit Douglass 79, Detroit Denby 60: Zavion McClendon had 23 points, Pierre Brooks II 22 points and 10 rebounds, Davantae Randle 10 points and 12 rebounds, and Donivan Peoples 12 points for Douglass (6-1, 3-0 PSL). Marquez Bridges scored 30 for Denby.

Detroit King 73, Detroit Central 33: Omar Zeigler Jr. scored 19 and Chauncey Willis Jr. 18 for King (7-2, 4-0 PSL East). Central is 1-5, 0-2.

Detroit Loyola 62, Ann Arbor Gabriel Richard 47: Mark Mayberry Jr. had 23 points and 12 rebounds and Corey Jenkins scored 14 for Loyola (8-0, 1-0 CHSL AA). Gabriel Richard is 2-4, 0-1.

Detroit Mumford 56, Detroit Henry Ford 50: Marcus Davis had 14 points,12 rebounds and four blocks and DeSean McMurray had 12, eight assists, and seven rebounds for Mumford (5-4, 2-1 DPSL West). Ryan Williams had 26 for Ford (3-5, 1-2).

Detroit Renaissance 71, Detroit Cody 26: Sterling Scott had 29 points and 12 rebounds, Juwan Maxey scored 17 and Jacob White 15 for Renaissance (4-3, 2-2 PSL West). Keoni Ware scored eight for Cody (4-3, 0-2).

Farmington 53, Troy 45: Jaden Aikens scored 15 and Tariq Humes 10 for Farmington (3-4. 2-0 OAA White). Jake Emerzian scored 13 for Troy (5-2, 1-1).

Ferndale 77, Bloomfield Hills 51: Jalen Daughtery had 17 points and 11 rebounds, Collin Gholston 12 and seven, Travon Lewis had 12, six and three steals and Jayshawn Moore 10 and eight assists for Ferndale (3-3, 2-0 OAA Red). Trevor Abamczyk scored 16 for Bloomfield Hills (4-5, 0-2).

Hartland 55, Salem 36: Kyle Hamlin scored 21 and Trevor Lewis 11 for Hartland (5-1, 2-0 KLAA West). Garrett Smith scored nine for Salem (3-3, 0-2). 

Harper Woods 53, Dearborn Henry Ford Academy 45: Curtis Jackson had 15 points and 10 assists and De’Ovion Brown had 14 and 10 rebounds for Harper Woods (3-3, 0-1 MMAC Blue). Ford is 2-4, 0-2.

Harper Woods Chandler Park 56, Detroit Cornerstone Health & Technology 41: Jayland Randall scored 20 and Chad Jones had 10 for Park (4-2, 2-0 CSA East). Cornerstone is 1-6, 0-1 CSC West. 

Howell 59, Plymouth 54: Tony Honkala scored 21 for Howell (5-1, 2-1 KLAA West). Matt MacLellan scored 19 for Plymouth (3-5, 0-2).

Kimball Landmark Academy 44, Chesterfield Austin Catholic 25: Kaden Kempa scored 11 and Zach Dietrich had 11 for Landmark (3-3, 1-0 ISA Conference). Austin Catholic is 2-4. 

Northville 49, Novi 38: Zach Shoemaker scored 24 and Brady Waithey 14 for Northville (6-0, 2-0 KLAA West). Ashton Smith scored 12 for Novi (2-4, 0-2).

Novi Christian Academy 70, Plymouth Christian Academy 51: Blake Goodman scored 24 and Johnathan Blackwell had 16 for Novi (5-0, 1-0 MIAC Blue). Nathan Etnyre scored 21 for Plymouth (2-6, 0-1).

Okemos 70, Lansing Waverly 54: Grant Hinterman scored 16 and Mitchell Sambaer, Noah Pruitt and Austin Gibson each scored 11, with Pruitt adding 10 assists for Okemos (5-2, 3-0 CAAC Blue). Ricky Martinez scored 18 and Diallo Walker 12 for Waverly (2-5, 0-3).

Redford Thurston 71, Dearborn Heights Robichaud  49: Emanuel Taylor scored 17, Isaiah Turner 15 and Ricky Davis 13 for Thurston (5-0, 2-0 WWAC). Jaylen Carter scored 13 for Robichaud (2-4,0-2). 

River Rouge 54, Hamtramck 49: Keyshawn Devlin scored 16 and Brent Dorby added 16 for River Rouge (6-1, 1-0 MMAC Blue). Herschal Maran scored 12 for Hamtramck (4-2, 1-1). 

Romulus 78, Melvindale 21: Keyshawn Kyle scored 18, Kaleb Wilson added 17 and Terrence Broughton had 11 points with nine steals for Romulus (2-2, 2-0 WWAC). Melvindale is 1-4, 0-2. 

Romulus Summit Academy North 50, Mount Clemens 49: Orlando Lovejoy scored 18 and James Wright 13 for Summit (5-2). Jovaughn Hannah scored 21 for Mount Clemens (4-4).

Southfield Bradford Academy 67, Pontiac Arts & Technology Academy 51: Cameron Burton scored 26 and Javion Owens had 13 points and 10 assists for Bradford (2-2, 1-1 CSC West). Pontiac is 2-4 in the CSC East.

Taylor Prep 82, Melvindale Academy 65: Cade Cadepiichan scored 30, Daylon Williams 14, and Jon Sabuda 13 for Prep (1-7, 1-1 MMAC Black). Melvindale is 2-3, 0-1. 

Walled Lake Central 46, Walled Lake Western 43: Donovan Dickerson scored 14 for Central (3-4, 2-1 LVC). Sam Athern scored 17 for Western (4-2, 2-1). 

Warren Michigan Collegiate 71, Dearborn Henry Ford Academy 24: Nick Johnson scored 18, Davion Jackson 11 and Mekhi Smith six for Collegiate (6-2, 2-1 Charter). Jermaine Gibson scored 14 for HFA (2-6, 0-2).

Wayne Memorial 59, Dearborn 56: Dante Foreman had 25 points, eight assists and seven rebounds, Tyler Smith-Whitlock had 11 and 12 rebounds and Cash Morgan had 11 and 12 assists for Memorial (2-3, 2-0). Niemer Hamood scored 20 and Jack Melton 17 for Dearborn (2-4, 1-1).

White Lake Lakeland 54, Milford 36: Austin Boughton scored 16 and David Jabiro 15 for Lakeland (3-3, 2-1 Lakes Valley). Ronnie Savage scored 11 for Milford (0-5, 0-3).

Ypsilanti Arbor Prep 68, Detroit University Prep Science and Math 44: Maurice Anderson scored 22 points and Patrick Kombo added 12 for Arbor Prep (6-2). University Prep is 0-8.

Girls basketball

Dearborn Heights Crestwood 46, Garden City 36: Alicia Ortiz scored 22 for Crestwood (3-1, 2-0 Western Wayne). Siena McNitt scored 15 for Garden City (0-5, 0-3). 

Detroit Community 42, Detroit University Prep Science and Math 27: Shania Henderson scored 21 for Community (2-1, 1-0 MMAC Black). U-Prep S&M is 1-8, 0-2.

Ecorse 53, Detroit University Prep 42: Basia Croft had 16 points and 10 rebounds and Alliyah Davis scored 15 for Ecorse (5-0, 1-0). Aniyah Samuels had 15 for U-Prep (5-4, 0-1). 

Farmington Hills Mercy 57, Dearborn Divine Child 27: Ellie Tisko scored 19, Julia Bishop 11 and Maddie Kenney 11 for Mercy (8-0, 3-0 CHSL Central). Divine Child is 6-3, 2-1.

Hartland 72, Salem 28: Whitney Sollom scored 12 for Hartland (6-0, 2-0 KLAA West). Laila Newton scored 14 for Salem (1-5,1-1). 

Howell 59, Plymouth 40: Meagan Tucker scored 15 and Maeve St. John added 14 for Howell (5-1, 4-0 KLAA West). Sophie Zelek had 21 points for Plymouth (3-3, 0-2).

Lincoln Park 38, Trenton 34, OT: Karrington Gordon scored 17 for Lincoln Park (6-1, 5-0 Downriver). Alyna Mulford had 11 points and 14 rebounds for Trenton (4-3, 2-2).

Macomb Dakota 52, Utica Eisenhower 45: Cam Graft scored 23 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks and Ella Burger scored 17 for Dakota (8-0, 3-0 MAC Red). Olivia Stack scored 12 and Emma Griffith had 11 for Eisenhower (5-3, 2-1). 

Madison Heights Lamphere 40, Warren Woods Tower 13: Nydia Shumate scored 16 and Evy Bisbikis 12 for Lamphere (5-2, 2-1 MAC Silver). Tower is 0-7, 0-3.

River Rouge 63, Taylor Prep 24: Sheneice Halmon had 11 points, Curtisey Williams 12 points and 10 rebounds and Taja Thompson 10 points for River Rouge.

Romulus 55, Melvindale 31: Ciara Hardy scored 18 and Dionna Carter added 16 for Romulus (5-3, 4-0 Western Wayne).

Romulus Summit Academy North 52, Mount Clemens 51: Ndidiamaka Ndukwe scored 33 for Summit (3-5, 2-0 Charter). Neveah Williams and Oliceia Porrit each scored 17 for Mount Clemens (4-4, 1-1).

St. Clair Shores Lakeview 59, Fraser 15: Trisha Sankiewicz scored 20 and Taedom Stein 16 for Lakeview (5-2, 1-1 MAC Blue). Fraser is 5-2, 1-1.

Taylor 48, Dearborn Edsel Ford 36: Avery Busch and Amiah Thomas each scored 15 for Taylor (3-4, 2-3 Downriver). Janae Jackson scored seven for Edsel Ford (2-4, 2-3).

Walled Lake Western 35, Walled Lake Central 27: Jenna Galecki scored 18 for Western (5-2, 4-0 Lakes Valley Conference). Central is 1-6, 1-3.   

dgoricki@detroitnews.com

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