In its effort to get back to the glory days of Novi Detroit Catholic Central basketball (i.e previous decades' teams led by the likes of Andy Short, Mark McDonald, Chris Young, Nick Moore), head coach Bill Dyer's Shamrocks' have gotten off on the right foot. CC is undefeated so far this season at 7-0 - beating a highly-thought of Warren De La Salle squad on tuesday, while holding Pilots' star, Alex Marcotullio, to a mere eight points - and features an attack that is the definition of well-balanced. This team has no superstars, yet they win with a stellar and deep mix of quality talent and an overall high hoops IQ on the floor. Seniors Tim Dezelski, Jamie Morris, and freshman Matt Doneth aggressively patrol the paint on defense and on offense all three can put in points, especially Dezelski, who can score from inside and out. Junior Brandon Hess is solid at the point, a true floor leader who looks to pass first and shoot second. On the wings, Brett Smith and Steve Harding each have a nose for the hoop and have the ability to heat up in a hurry. Chris Barnas and Shea Kettner are stalwarts off the bench. With the way things are going, the Shamrocks will definitely compete for the Catholic League title and most likely make a strong run in the state tournament. After several years of mediocrity, CC seems to be making a play at re-storing the past Shamrock pride on the hardwood.
At first glance this season, I questioned if Pontiac Northern's Gabby Machado,20was a true big ten talent - she is heading to Iowa on a full ride next year. Seeing her play last season, I wasn't that impressed. A small DI school maybe, I thought would be a good fit, but not big time college hoops. Watching her twice in the last week, I realized how wrong I was to doubt Machado's luster and skill. There is no doubt she is a bonafide Big Ten player, with the potential to be a very good one at that. Machado has a sugar sweet floor game. She is multi-dimensional with her scoring ability and a vocal leader, always trying to encourage her teammates. On Tuesday night, she put on a show, plain and simple: she scored 26 points, corralled nine boards, dished eight assists, and collected six steals, in her team's defeat of Southfield-Lathrup. Taking down previously undefeated Lake Orion last Saturday, she score 22 points and grabbed seven rebounds. A week ago in a loss to North Farmington, she scored 12 of her 22 in the fourth quarter, spearheading a late rally that saw her Huskies trim a 24 point deficit to just four in less than six minutes. This girls can straight out play and I can't believe I ever thought otherwise.