Farmington — Four-star guard Jaden Akins tossed aside a slow start and foul trouble to score 20 with eight rebounds to help Farmington to a 54-47 win over Birmingham Brother Rice in a Division 1 district opener Monday.
Akins, a 6-foot-3 junior who has offers from Michigan State, Michigan and Iowa, scored 12 of his points after being limited to 3 of 9 shooting (1 of 5 3-pointers) in the first half.
Akins picked up two quick fouls in the early minutes of the second quarter, forcing him to the bench. He didn’t pick up his third until the final minute of the third quarter, but went back to the bench early in the fourth after getting whistled for his fourth with Farmington leading 41-35.
Akins is part of a talented backcourt that includes junior Tariq Humes, sophomore Robert Davis Jr. and freshman Prince Jackson.
And, with Akins in foul trouble, Jackson stepped up and showed his ability to penetrate and get teammates quality shots in the second half, as did Davis in the first half to give OAA White Division-champion Farmington (11-10) a 12-9 lead after one and 28-17 halftime lead.
Humes scored 14, including a pair of 3-pointers in the opening quarter, then six during the fourth quarter, including a driving layup for a 48-42 cushion with 1:50 left.
Brother Rice — which finished 12-9 and had a win over No. 10 Grand Blanc — played without standout junior guard Mikkos Stewart and it obviously hurt, allowing Farmington to pay more attention to senior guard Jon Brantley and talented freshmen Xavier Thomas and Curtis Williams.
Thomas scored 14, including seven in the opening quarter, showing his ability to score in transition, in the halfcourt set or off of putbacks.
Brantley scored a game-high 21, scoring all eight of his team’s second-quarter points when Farmington built its largest lead of 11.
Brother Rice failed to cash in on second-chance opportunities in the second quarter.
Jackson showed his quickness in the third quarter, penetrating Brother Rice’s defense and finding Zion Carroll inside for a basket. He connected with Akins for a transition basket after grabbing a steal 13 seconds later to open a 41-32 lead, a deficit Brother Rice couldn’t recover from.
“I knew I just had to attack the basket and get my teammates open, so we could win,” Jackson said. “This is the most that I’ve played this year, it’s great playing with them (Akins, Humes and Davis) and all of their skill.”
Said Akins: “I have full trust in Prince, in practice I’m always guarding him and making him better, so I know he can strive and succeed in big situations.
“We always talk about coming out of halftime and making a run and that stretch in that third quarter was the key to the game, felt like Prince did a good job.”
Farmington was forced to score in transition since it had trouble with Brother Rice’s press earlier in the third quarter and was cold for most of the game from the perimeter, making just 6 of 25 3-pointers.
More boys districts
Dearborn 38, Dearborn Crestwood 36: Niemer Hamood scored 13 and Brendan Rousseaw scored eight and hit the winning shot for Dearborn (10-11). Hussein Ismail 14 for Crestwood (10-11).
Detroit Cass Tech 52, Detroit Western 36: Tyson Acuff had 27 points with eight rebounds and five steals, and Kalen King had 11 points and four steals for Cass Tech (19-2). Stephen Bibbs had 16 points for Western (7-10).
Detroit Edison 80, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett 27: Vincent Cooley had 14 points, and Ralph Bland II and Thaddeus Powell each had 13 for Edison (17-4). Michael Clark had 10 for Liggett (9-14).
Detroit Loyola 75, Madison Heights Madison 45: Mark Mayberry Jr. had 37 points and 13 rebounds for Loyola (16-4). Anthony Fuller scored 16 for Madison (7-14).
Detroit University Prep 77, Detroit Collegiate Prep 31: Eric Smithe scored 15 for Collegiate Prep (1-16). Anthony Karr scored 28 and Malcolm Cain 18 for University Prep (6-14).
Eastpointe 81, Grosse Pointe North 73: Davion Holloway scored 30, Cedric Poole had 23, and Davion Watkins had 17 for Eastpointe (18-3). Andrew Cudek scored 24 and Jordan Shepherd had 16 for Grosse Pointe (3-17).
Ecorse 52, Canton Prep 43: DeAndre Gains had 17 points and 10 rebounds, Malik Olafioye 16 points, five rebounds and three steals, and Michael Woods had 11 points for Ecorse (15-6). Bo Oyeneyin had 17 points and Damario Brown 10 for Canton Prep (14-7).
Frederick Douglass 85, University Prep Science & Math 64: Pierre Brooks II scored 27 for Douglass (16-5). Javion Blackwell scored 30 and Jalen McGowen 12 for University Prep (7-14).
Harper Woods 63, Detroit East English 44: Curtis Jackson had 41 points and 10 assists for Harper Woods (7-10). East English is 6-13.
Northville 48, Plymouth 39: Grant Mathiesen scored 19 and Zach Shoemaker had 15 points and 13 rebounds for Northville (17-4). Matt Maclellan scored 20 for Plymouth (10-11).
Okemos 64, Jackson Northwest 21: Noah Pruitt had 18 points and Will Young 11 for Okemos (17-4). Ian Weller scored 10 for Northwest (8-13).
Orchard Lake St. Mary’s 78, Pontiac 46: Julian Roeper scored 30 for St. Mary’s (20-1). Pontiac is 10-11.
Redford Thurston 58, Livonia Franklin 40: Emanuel Taylor scored 20 for Thurston (17-2). Dom Uffermann scored 24 for Franklin (6-15).
Southfield A&T 66, Birmingham Groves 60: Jailin Lee scored 15, Caleb Banks added 14 points and 10 rebounds, and Anthony Davis had 12 points for A&T. Daniel Lee scored 13 and Devin White and Charles Bailey each had 12 for Groves (9-12).
Troy Athens 67, Sterling Heights 45: Bryce Eaton scored 16, Max Delong 11, Mike Justice 11 for Troy (16-5). Anthony Danno scored 15 for Sterling Heights (6-15).
U-D Jesuit 93, Oak Park 79: Chris Mutebi scored 25 and Sonny Wilson 16 for Jesuit. Fred Garland had 39 points and Devontae Edwards 15 for Oak Park.
Walled Lake Northern 55, Walled Lake Central 28: Jesse Lawson Jr. scored 13 and Kevyn Robertson had nine and 10 rebounds for Northern (12-9). Jeremy Epps scored seven for Central (8-13).
Westland John Glenn 68, Garden City 26: Deonta Pearson scored 13 and Kyle Holt had 10 for John Glenn (17-4). Cameron Duncan scored 12 for Garden City (0-21).
Detroit News staff contributed