Man-Man: Buctown freshman Monte Morris
In what I consider the most intriguing district final in Mid-Michigan, a pair of known commodities in class C will battle once again for bragging rights in Flint.
Flint Beecher (14-7), coming off another down-turned-up season, will take on Flint Hamady (17-5) at 7 p.m. at Burton Bendle High School. The game will feature two of the Flint area’s top coaches — Hamady’s Archy Robinson and Buctown’s Mike Williams.
Buctown has gotten the best of Hamady four games in a row dating back to 2007, and by an average hovering around three points per game.
This season, like the last, Hamady has the talent advantage. On paper, Hamady’s starting five should be competitive with any in the state in class C. Junior forward Dominez Burnett is a smooth scorer with size and range. He’s the best player at Hamady since Marcus Coleman. Senior guards Darryl Dixon and Roy Jackson are tough to cover, with Jackson’s length and crafty dribbling coupled with Dixon’s athleticism and shooting ability. And you can’t sleep on sophomore forward Quin Langston, who can scored 20+ on any given night.
Buctown counters with a top five freshman in Michigan, 5’9” guard Monte’ Morris. He hasn’t gotten as much attention as other Flint-area freshmen, but he’s probably the best of the group. He has put up huge numbers for the Bucs this season, and is more efficient than the average senior. Sophomore Antuan Burks, coming off a 19-point performance against Beecher, is becoming more aggressive and tends to feed off the energy of Morris.
The task of stopping Burnett and Langston will be charged to 6-2 senior forward D’Marius Houston and 6-2 sophomore Cortez Robinson. The pair isn’t as skilled as Hamady’s big two, but they won’t be scared.
Prediction: This is Buctown’s 5th consecutive district championship game. I respect Buctown’s toughness and I’m confident that Coach Williams will have them ready. Hamady has lost to every good team they’ve played this year. They are capable of beating Buctown, but I’ll believe it when I see it. Buctown by three.