BASKETBALL: Saline Defeats Hartland

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 12/14/2018 - 02:54
Logan Evans, shown here against Melvindale, scored a game-high 13 points for the Hornets Tuesday against Hartland.

It has been widely reported in the national news media that following the announcement of the resignation of Gen. John Kelly, the president’s chief of staff, the person thought to be his replacement declined an offer from the president. There was no Plan B.

Saline varsity basketball coach Jacob Fosdick unveiled his Plan B in Tuesday night’s game against the Hartland Eagles.

“In the first quarter I thought we were giving up too many easy, uncontested shots,” Fosdick said, “so I changed the defense to man-to-man coverage.”

The rest as they say, is history.

Fosdick’s Plan B worked to perfection as the Hornets went on to out-score the Eagle 28-7 in the second and third quarters to take control of the game. With the 55-33 victory, Saline improves to 3-2 on the season.

The Hornets were playing tough on defense to start the game but Hartland kept finding open shots to jump out to a 13-8 first quarter lead. The Hornets committed four first quarter turnovers and seemed uncertain while on offense.

“We had good energy to start the game but Hartland kept getting good looks at the basket,” Fosdick said. “So, in the huddle after the first quarter, I switched to a man-to-man defense. The guys executed it perfectly.”

The Hornets rolled over the Eagles in the second quarter, forcing four turnovers which led directly to six points. Junior guard Griffin “Lightning” Yaklich took control of the offense, scoring 6 of his eleven points. Saline outscored Hartland 16-5, to take a 24-18 halftime lead.

In every game, there is a play that you can point to that rips the heart out of a team. In the closing seconds of the first half, Saline put up a shot that went off the rim, with the rebound heading out of bounds. Senior guard Peter Jacobsen dove after the loose ball, flung it to teammate Tyler Bleskus, who calmly swished a three-point shot with exactly 0:00:3 seconds on the clock.

Though the Eagles trailed by only six at the half, after Belskus’ shot, they were done.

Saline continued to roll over the Eagles in the second half, outscoring them 12-2 and 19-13 to win, 55-33.

Scoring was shared amongst several Hornets in the second half. There were contributions from sophomore forwards Nathan Holmberg (9 points) and Anthony Ferrari (5 rebounds) in the second half. Yaklich scored 8 of his 11 points in the second half.

Yaklich is considered a point guard, the player that directs traffic on offense. When point guards are doing their job, they make everyone on the court better. That is what Yaklich did in this game.

He made plays. And the plays that Yaklich made were highlight reel material.

“Griffin has such great vision of the court, of the entire court,” said Fosdick. “He is a difference maker. And it showed tonight”

Yaklich had 8 assists for the game, including a no-look pass to senior forward Logan Evans who drilled a three-point shot from the corner. Evans scored a team-high 13 points to go with his 4 rebounds.

Evans is emerging as a powerful force on defense, providing much needed strength under the basket. Through five games, you can see his energy build. In his play Tuesday night against Hartland, watching him play was similar to watching a storm front coming across Lake Michigan.

The intensity just kept building and building. And when combined with some of Yaklich’s “Lightning,” it was potent.

It is interesting to speculate about this team when Trevor “Thunder” Arico is ready to play, perhaps as soon as January. The three of them, Arico, Evans and Yaklich, with the steady play of Jacobsen and Belskus, and the players who come off the bench, all ready to bring the storm in SEC Red division play.

There is still work to be done with the team. They shot just 42 percent from the free throw line (6 of 14). And they are still learning how to play together as a unit. From the first game to now, there has been improvement. Let’s hope from now until Friday, Jan. 11, when they start SEC Red Division play, it continues.

Saline will get back into action on Tuesday, 12-18-18 when they host Tecumseh. Tip-off time is 7 p.m.



1st Star: Logan Evans (13 points, 4 rebounds, 2 blocked shots)

2nd Star: Griffin Yaklich (11 points, 6 rebounds, 8 assists, 1 blocked shot)

3rd Star: Tyler Belskus (8 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist)

JV Loses First Game

The Saline junior varsity squad’s season record dropped to 4-1, following a 51-45 loss to the Hartland Eagles Tuesday night at Saline High School.

The Hornets came out strong in the first quarter, opening with an 8-0 lead. Sophomore center Luke Darmos scored 6 of his team high 12 points in the quarter. After the Saline run, Hartland slowly chipped away at the lead, trailing by three, 13-10 at the end of the first quarter.

Though the team seemed to have energy on the court, their play was out of sync.

Following the loss, JV Head Coach Jason Pickett said, “we didn’t have a good practice yesterday and it showed in our play today.”

“You know when you are winning it hides certain things,” Pickett said. “After the game, we talked about our practice and our play tonight. We were sloppy with the ball tonight but we will work on that in practice. We’ll be alright.”

Despite the defeat, Darmos had an exceptional game. He was a force to be reckoned with on both ends of the court. He finished the game with 12 points, 13 rebounds and 5 blocked shots. And a couple of those blocked shots were of the ‘in your face’ variety.

The JV squad will host the Tecumseh Indians on Tuesday. Game time is 5:30 p.m.


1st Star: Luke Darmos (12 points, 13 rebounds, 5 blocked shots)

2nd Star: Eli Trese (9 points (including 3 three-point shots), 2 assists)

3rd Star: Evan Merillat (9 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists)

Saline Freshmen Still Perfect

The Saline freshman hoopsters remained perfect on the year, raising their record to 5-0 with a 46-35 win over the Hartland Eagles Tuesday night. The young Hornet squad led from start to finish, jumping out to a 12-4 first quarter lead. It was a huge third quarter for the Hornets, outscoring the Eagles 23-11 that allowed subs to play the final eight minutes.



1st Star: Braden LaRusso (19 points)

2nd Star: Romeo Love (6 points)

3rd Star: Evan Grill (3 points)

Steven Sheldon's picture
Steven Sheldon