FLINT, Michigan — Sweet revenge was on the menu tonight at the Steve Schmidt Gymnasium. The no. 1-ranked Mott Community College Bears hosted their bitter rival and had the opportunity to atone for their only loss of the season.
The Bears were up to the challenge, though it took them about 25 minutes to show it.
Mott (22-1) played an exceptional second half that featured a 10-0 run punctuated by a pair of electrifying Walter Davis slams. The Bears led by as many as 15 in the half, shot 65 percent from the field and cruised to a 73-60 win.
Mott led by only one at halftime after a putrid first 20 minutes for both teams. The Bears scored only four points in the first seven and a half minutes. Henry Ford led by as many as seven points before a late flurry put Mott up 28-27.
The second half was vintage Mott. The Bears were relentless attacking the rim and forced numerous ill-advised shots on the defensive end.
Mott was led by freshman guard Ralph Eason who scored a game-high 16 points with 11 rebounds. The Bears’ all-everything guard John Taylor was steady with 15 points, five rebounds and three assists. In the end, though, it was Davis who came authored the game’s turning point midway through the second half. He finished with 10 points, seven rebounds and four blocks.
Grant Stone, who actually tried out for Mott a few years back, led Henry Ford with 12 points. The Hawks’ big man in the middle, 6-10 James Still, scored 11 points on five shots and pulled down nine rebounds. I’m still shocked that the Hawks could not find a way to get him involved in the offense a little more against Mott’s smaller frontline.
This is not the Henry Ford of old. This team lacks a true star like Jamie Stewart or Terrance Tubbs. Further, they made a lot of mental mistakes in this game. Double and triple-teaming John Taylor is a really bad idea, and they paid for it.
Mott keeps proving it doesn’t need a dominant frontcourt to win big games. Coach Steve Schmidt’s stable of guards is good enough to make up for what he lacks in size in the post.
Mott returns to action at 3 p.m. on Saturday on the road versus Macomb.