Wednesday's high schools roundup: Roper leads St. Mary's over Rodgers, Grand Blanc

David Goricki
The Detroit News

Orchard Lake — Northwestern-bound Julian Roper and No. 2 Orchard Lake St. Mary’s went head-to-head against four-star junior Ty Rodgers and No. 4 Grand Blanc Wednesday night in a showdown pushed back a day by the week’s snowstorm.

Roper proved he was the best player on the floor (29 points, 12 rebounds, five assists) in leading St. Mary’s (3-0) to a 65-52 win.

“We practice hard every day for this so it’s just another game to us, shout out to Grand Blanc, they gave us a run for our money, but we went out here and earned it tonight, we were prepared and did what we had to do,” Roper said.

So, what worked for Roper?

“Just attacking, attacking the rim and then giving it to my teammates so I could get it back,” Roper said. “My teammates did a great job of getting it to me when I needed it so we could do what we needed to do to get the W.”

St. Mary's' Kareem Rozier shoots between Grand Blanc's Andre Ridley, left, and RJ Taylor, right.

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Roper, a 6-foot-4, 200-pound senior guard and a frontrunner for Mr. Basketball, was at his best early, helping St. Mary’s take a 7-0 lead.

First, Roper attacked the basket for the game’s opening points, then penetrated and found Will Smythe for a 3-pointer, and after taking a charge, came back and hit a 15-footer to conclude the run.

Roper was equally as good to start the second half, taking another charge, then grabbing a rebound and going coast-to-coast for a layup to cap an 8-0 run to give St. Mary’s its largest lead to that point, 36-26.

Grand Blanc never got closer than 37-30 the rest of the way with St. Mary’s junior guard Jack Crighton scoring all seven of his points in the third for a 44-35 lead heading into the fourth.

Roper scored 14 fourth-quarter points, including a driving dunk with Rodgers looking on for a 53-40 cushion.

Then, things got interesting as Rodgers, on a drive, didn’t get a call and lost the ball for his sixth turnover, then trying to get the ball back got tangled up with St. Mary’s 6-9 Harrison Ogochukwu, who was on the bottom of the pile.

St. Mary’s took its largest lead seconds later at 55-40 on a Kareem Rozier layup after breaking the press.

Rodgers, a physical, 6-6 guard/forward, finished with 13 points and nine rebounds, making just 5-of-16 shots. Sophomore guard RJ Taylor scored 17 for Grand Blanc (3-1).

Rodgers scored five in the opening quarter, while guarded by Roper, to give Grand Blanc an 11-9 lead, capitalizing on second-chance opportunities. St. Mary’s led 12-11 after one querter when Roper again attacked the basket and found, Smythe who connected on his second 3-pointer from the right corner in the final seconds.

Rodgers had multiple turnovers in the second quarter, but found teammates Tmonte Boyd and Shamus Thompson for inside baskets to keep Grand Blanc close.

St. Mary’s outstanding junior point guard Kareem Rozier had trouble finishing at the basket for much of the first half, but again Roper took over, scoring off a driving layup to help St. Mary’s pull even at 14 after Rodgers’ three-point play (basket and free throw).

St. Mary’s also had inside scoring from 6-6, 225-pound DeCorion Temple (four points) and 6-8 center Peter Nwoke during the second, along with more strong play from Roper, including a breakaway dunk off a steal and a step-back 3-pointer for a 28-25 halftime lead.

More boys basketball

Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood 65, Ann Arbor Greenhills 36: Cam Garner had 18 points and Miles Pistner had 13 points for Cranbrook (3-1, 3-1 Catholic). Finn Klien and Ryder Fried each had 11 points for Greenhills (1-1, 1-1).

Dearborn High School 50, Wayne Memorial 32: Adnan Rammouni scored 11 points for Dearborn (3-1, 3-1 KLAA East). Wayne Memorial is 1-3,1-3. 

Dearborn Academy 72, Warren Michigan Math & Science 28: Armon Parker scored 16 points and Shawn James had 14 points and 10 rebounds for Dearborn (3-1). Devin Moore scored 14 for Math & Science (1-2).

Detroit Cass Tech 54, Southfield Arts & Technology 40: Mekhai Walker scored 13 points and had five rebounds, Rylan Bowens had 12 points and eight rebounds, and Christian Hairston had 12 points and four steals for Cass Tech (4-0, 2-0 DPSL). Jaylen Mack scored 11 points for Southfield (0-2, 0-1 OAA White). 

Detroit King 61, Roseville 39: Chansey Willis Jr. scored 17 points, Lamont Parks Jr. had 11, Travis Turner Jr. had 10, and Davin Walker had 14 rebounds for King (4-0). Makell Johnson scored 12 for Roseville.

Harper Woods Chandler Park 59, Warren Michigan Collegiate 43: Dylan Grant had 15 points with six rebounds and Antonio Hudson had 12 points for Chandler Park (3-0, 2-0 Charter). Nick Johnson had 17 points for Warren Michigan (2-2, 2-1).

Redford Union 68, Redford Thurston 61: Braylon Allison scored 25 points, Malik O’Neil had 14, and Denim Ray-Barrow had 10 for Union (2-0). Kion Bedford scored 17 points and Chris Williams had 19 for Thurston (1-0).

Romulus Academy Summit North 76, Detroit Denby 35: Orlando Lovejoy had 20 points and 10 rebounds, James Wright had 18 points, and Dontez Scott Jr. had 17 points and seven assists for Romulus Summit (3-0). Denby is 1-2.

More boys basketball scores

Almont 73, Imlay City 65

Belleville 74, Livonia Churchill 40

Berkley 40, Birmingham Seaholm 35

Canton 61, Hartland 51

Clarkston Everest Collegiate 69, Waterford Lakes 15

Dearborn 50, Wayne Memorial 32

Dearborn Advanced Tech Academy 72, Warren Michigan Math & Science 28

Dearborn Divine Child 82, Detroit Renaissance 72

Dearborn Heights Annapolis 42, Melvindale 39

Detroit Cristo Rey 70, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett 67 (OT)

Ecorse 82, Taylor Prep 28

Hamtramck 94, Taylor Trillium Academy 53

Madison Heights Bishop Foley 63, Royal Oak Shrine Catholic 46

Northville 53, Howell 41

Livonia Franklin 51, Dearborn Fordson 41

Ortonville Brandon 63, Owosso 21

Redford Union 68, Redford Thurston 61

Salem 72, Novi 44

Trenton 67, Lincoln Park 62

Troy Athens 64, Rochester 49

Girls basketball

Dearborn Fordson 44, Livonia Franklin 39: Milan Berry scored 15 points, Batoul Reda had 12 and six assists, and Dunia Saleh had 10 points and 13 rebounds for Fordson (2-2, 2-2 KLAA East). Erin Young scored 15 points for Franklin (0-4, 2-2). 

Grosse Pointe North 48, Utica Eisenhower 24: Natalie Babcock had 12 points and Maddie Kohler had 11 points for Grosse Pointe North (3-1, 2-0 MAC Red). Ava Stack had seven points for Eisenhower (2-2, 1-1). 

Hartland 54, Plymouth Canton 23: Syd Caddell scored 11 points and Lillee Gustafson had 10 for Hartland (4-0, 4-0 KLAA West). Canton is 1-3, 1-3. 

Madison Heights Lamphere 47, Warren Mott 29: Nydia Shumate had 21 points and Kate Robinson had 10 points for Lamphere (2-0, 2-0 MAC Silver). Warren Mott is 1-1, 0-1.

Romulus 51, Crestwood 25: Ciara Hardy scored 20 points for Romulus (2-0, 2-0 WWAC). Crestwood is 0-2, 0-2.

Roseville 51, Warren Fitzgerald 41: Olivia Vanderham scored 16 points and six assists, Za’Ryia Wright had 14, and Gracie Magee had 11 points and seven rebounds for Roseville (2-0). Tanaizah Coleman scored 25 points for Fitzgerald (1-3). 

St Clair Shores Lakeview 58, St Clair Shores Lake Shore 30: Ari Wlodeck had 20 points and Tricia Sankiewicz had 13 points for Lakeview (4-0, 2-0 MAC Blue). Jera Herbon had eight points for Lake Shore (1-3, 0-2).

Taylor 35, Wyandotte 10: Amiah Thomas had 17 points and 11 rebounds for Taylor (2-1, 2-1 Downriver). Elisia Gonzalez had four points for Wyandotte (3-2, 2-2).

Woodhaven 45, Allen Park 33: Bella Anderson scored 12 points and Faith Long had 11 for Woodhaven (3-0, 3-0 Downriver). Emma Bateman scored 13 for Allen Park (1-4, 1-4),

More girls basketball scores

Ann Arbor Father Gabriel Richard 59, Milan 36

Ann Arbor Greenhils 40, Riverview Gabriel Richard 32

Ann Arbor Pioneer 78, Ann Arbor Skyline 29

Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood 45, Clarkston Everest Collegiate 32

Bloomfield Hills Marian 64, Farmington Hills Mercy 59 (2OT)

Brighton 52, Plymouth 34

Clawson 34, Warren Woods Tower 20

Dearborn Heights Annapolis 63, Melvindale 16

Detroit University Prep 55, River Rouge 35

Eastpointe 51, Clinton Township Clintondale 27

Ecorse 56, Taylor Prep 45

Garden City 37, Dearborn Heights Robichaud 30

Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett 60, Detroit Cristo Rey 18

Marysville 47, Marine City 19

New Baltimore Anchor Bay 53, Utica Ford 26

Port Huron Northern 53, Macomb Dakota 35

Romulus 51, Dearborn Heights Crestwood 25

Roseville 51, Warren Fitzgerald 41

Royal Oak Shrine Catholic 46, Allen Park Cabrini 23

South Lyon East 53, Wixom St. Catherine 52

St. Clair 61, Sterling Heights 22

St Clair Shores South Lake 30, Center Line 23

Trenton 65, Lincoln Park 14

Warren Cousino 38, Fraser  24

Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes 57, Madison Heights Bishop Foley 49

Wayne Memorial 90, Dearborn 66