Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan on May 12, 1986 · Page 73
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Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan · Page 73

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Detroit, Michigan
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Monday, May 12, 1986
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Prep report 8H DETROIT FREE PRESSMONDAY, MAY 12, 1986 pic? stent Football season will open week early in 1987 v if J Mick David Walczyk Cindy Creighton playoffs. - That plan would have all but killed the Catholic League's Prep Bowl and caused problems for the Detroit Public School League, which would have had to hold its championship a week earlier. It afso would have messed up traditional rivalries like Royal Oak's Kimball-Dondero showdown, Birmingham's Seaholm-Groves game and countless others that prefer to play the last game of the season against each other. What the coaches wanted, and will get, is beginning the 1987 season a week earlier by playing the first game Labor Day weekend, before most schools are in session. It will certainly create added work for the state's athletic directors, who may have problems staffing home games opening night. It may also cut summer vacations a little A lot of high school football coaches are going to be happy when the Michigan High School Athletic Association announces this week that the 1987 football season will open a week early. The early opening is necessary to accommodate a full nine-game regular season before the 64-team, four-week state playoff format begins. Last fall, the playoff format was expanded from 32 teams (eight in each of the four classes) to 64 teams (16 teams in each class). That added an extra week to the playoff system, which concludes the Saturday after Thanksgiving with the championship games in the Pontiac Silverdome. Because of an extra week between the ninth week of the football season and Thanksgiving, there was no need to change anything last season or in 1986. But in 1987 there are only two weeks between the traditional ninth shorter for coaches and athletes, but the MHSAA was smart enough to realize this plan is the best move for high school football in Michigan. Trouble at Minnesota? Last week some black activists in Minneapolis announced they were beginning a letter writing campaign to discourage black athletes from attending the University of Minnesota, which the group said was insensitive to the needs of black athletes. The news caught Connell Lewis, a senior basketball player at Detroit Cass Tech, by surprise. Recently, Lewis signed a letter of intent with Minnesota. Lewis said new Minnesota coach Clem Raskins, who is black, did not mention the problems. "I think he should have told me about it; it might have had an effect on my decision," Lewis said. "When I visited there I was around the black crowd and they didn't tell me anything about it. But I'm sure I can deal with it." Lewis said he chose Minnesota over Missouri, Toledo and Colorado despite problems the school had last season. Three basketball players were charged with raping a Madison, Wis., woman. Also, a shockingly low (11 percent) graduation rate among basketball players was revealed. "Coach (Haskins) said it's all in the past," Lewis said. "When I was there they said they were trying to forget about these things. They said it's not ' going to happen again. I know I won't be in any of that. I'll be OK." Another player who has signed with Minnesota is Willie Burton of Detroit St. Martin dePorres. Burton was mentioned as one of the targets of the letter writing campaign. But he -would not come to the phone when called. David Walczyk Walczyk, a senior catcher at Harper Woods Notre Dame, is batting .410. He helped Norte Dame win the Harper Woods baseball tournament by hitting .500, driving in four runs and scoring four runs. Notre Dame beat Birmingham Brother Rice twice, 6-4; 6-3, to win the title. Cindy Creighton Creighton, a senior pitcher at Morley Stanwood High, is 11-3 and is hitting .458. Morley Stanwood won the Reed City Invitational Softball tournament and Creighton had "three complete-game victories. She pitched two shutouts, and allowed one earned run in her third victory. week of the season and Thanksgiving. That meant something had to give. The MHSAA was committed to maintaining the 64-team playoff field as well as keeping the championships the Saturday after Thanksgiving. The alternative that the coaches feared most was using the ninth week of the regular season for the first round of the playoffs. If your team made the playoffs you would have a playoff game that weekend. If the team you were scheduled to play qualified for the playoffs you would play your final game against another team that also had an opponent in the renkinfls ,5, is. 'Oil mlnOimmiiUlifc,., t jf , ' Tennis State tenni rankings, at selected by the Michigan High School Tennis Coaches Association Class A: 1. Redford Catholic Central. 2. Midland Dow. 3. East Lansing. 4. Birmingham Brother Rice. 5. Birmingham Seaholm. 6. Bloomfield Hills Lahser. 7. Ann Arbor Huron. 8. Bloomfield Hills Andover. 9. Ann Arbor Pioneer. 10. Portage Northern. Class B: 1. Okemos. 2. Cranbrook. 3. East Grand Rapids. 4. Spring Lake. 5. Stur-gis. 6. Saline. 7. Forest Hills Central. 8. Gull Lake. 9. Allegan. 10. (tie) Dearborn and Grand Rapids Christain. Class C-D: 1. Detroit Country Day. 2. Grosse Pointe University Liggett. 3. Kalamazoo Hackett. 4. North Muskegon. 5. Ann Arbor Green Hills. 6. Berrien Springs 7. Williamston. 8. Almont. 9. Whittemore Pres-cott. 10. Battle Creek Springfield. Top 10 All Classes: 1. Okemos. 2. Hedford Catholic Central. 3. Midland Dow. 4. Cranbrook. 5. East Lansing. 6. Birmingham Brother Rice 7. East Grand Rapids. 8. Detroit Country Day. 9. University Liggett. 10. Birmingham Seaholm. Baseball Stat baseball rankings, as selected by the Michigan High School Baseball Coaches Association Class A: 1. Birmingham Brother Rice (22- 3) . 2. Mt. Pleasant (1 9-2). 3. Midland Dow (20- 4) . 4. Midland (20-6). 5. Grand Ledge (20-6). 6. Clio (17-4). 7. Rochester Adams (14-4). 8. Clarkston (14-4). 9. Fraser (15-5). 10. Bay City Western (15-5). Class B: 1. Willow Run (22-0). 2. Southwest Christian (18-2). 3. Essexville Garber (18-3). 4. Linden (21-4). 5. Dearborn Divine Child (21-4). 6. Monroe Catholic Central (18- 5) . 7. Grand Rapids Catholic Central (16-5). 8. Durand (16-5). 9. Ortonville Brandon (14-2). 10. Chesaning (21-8). Class C: 1. Laingsburg (13-1). 2. Lansing Catholic Central (12-1). 3. Niles Brandywine (11-3). 4. Buchanan (11-4) 5. Napoleon (13- 0) . 6. Tawas Area (13-1). 7. DeWitt (15-3). 8. Clinton (13-3). 9. Blissfield (17-4). 10. Union City 12-3). Class D: 1. Tekonsha (16-1). 2. Beal City (17-3). 3. Athens (14-4). 4. Western Michigan Christian (14-4). 5. Bethesda (12-2). 6. Wyoming Lee (12-3). 7. Cheboygan Catholic (10- 1) . 8. Frankfort (9-1). 9. Carsonville-Port Sanilac (14-5). 10. Maple City-Glenn Lake (14-6). Softball State Softball rankings, as selected by the Michigan High School Softball Coaches Association Class A: 1. Garden City. 2. Fraser. 3. East Detroit. 4. Temperance-Bedford. 5. Midland. 6. East Kentwood. 7. Portage Central. 8. Trenton. 9. Clarkston. 10. Flint Kearsley. Class B: 1. Saginaw Swan Valley. 2. Essexville Garber. 3. Richland Gull Lake. 4. Midland Bullock Creek. 5. St. Joseph. 6. Dowagiac. 7. Riverview. 8. Jackson Northwest. 9. Monroe St. Mary. 10. Zeeland. Class C: 1. Ann Arbor Gabriel Richard. 2. Calvin Christian. 3. Laingsburg. 4. Morenci. 5. Kalamazoo Christian. 6. Pontiac Catholic. 7. DeWitt. 8. Howard City Tri-County. 9. Armada. 10. Dansville. Class D: 1. Frankfort. 2. Webberville. 3. Arenac Eastern. 4. Inland Lakes. 5. Central Lake. 6. Ottawa Lake-Whiteford. 7. McBain. 8 Gaylord St. Mary. 9. Petersburg Summer-field. 10. Portland St. Patrick. Isl.. - t. t- . ... . .... . .... , . Free Press Pholos bv HUGH GRANNUM Cass Tech's Charles Weaver (above) has had a mediocre year but is still one of the state's best high school pitchers. Detroit King's Grady Davidson (right) starts all of his windups with a low crouch. Davidson is just a junior but has pitched three no-hitters. Top pitchers need a little seasoning State's cream of the crop Bud Middaugh. "He seems to have the makings of a decent curveball, too." Aldred is also one of the state's top athletes. He was an all-state quarterback and an all-county basketball player. When Aldred wasn't pitching, Montrose coach Wayne Wright used him at third base. "He was probably the only left-handed third baseman in the state," Wright said. "He is a very good fielder. Scott is one of those super kids who Pitcher School IP SO W-L-T ERA Scott Aldred Montrose 22 44 2-2 0.81 Charles Weaver Cass Tech NA NA 52 NA Tim Lata Bishop Foley 44 72 5-1 1.11 Bill Bragg Bishop Foley 44 75 5M 1.90 Dave Johnson Davison 40 74 5-2 1.95 Jack Skoog Ionia 46 76 l 1.15 Grady Davidson Detroit King 28 67 3-1 0.00 Soccer State soccer rankings, as selected by the Michigan Soccer Coaches Association 1. Livonia Churchill. 2. Livonia Stevenson. 3 Troy Athens. 4 Plymouth Salem. 5. North-ville. 6. Troy. 7. Fraser. 8. Grosse Pointe South. 9. Birmingham Marian. 10.Saginaw Eisenhower. By MICK McCABE Free Press Sports Writer The class of 1986 has some good Michigan high school pitchers, but the question is how good are they? On the surface there does not seem to be anyone in the class of a Dan Gabriele, Walled Lake Western's sensation who was the first round choice of the Boston Red Sox last year. There is also no one like John Smoltz of Lansing Waverly, who signed with the Tigers late last summer, or even a Jim Abbott of Flint Central who turned down the Toronto Blue Jays to enroll at Michigan last fall. But that does not mean this is a bad year for pitchers. Next fall the state's Division I schools will be filled with freshmen pitchers from Michigan who will probably have outstanding college careers. And that may be all they need to turn into successful pro pitchers. Here is a look at some of the state's best pitchers: Scott Aldred, Montrose Aldred, 6-feet-4, 195 pounds, has emerged as the state's top prospect. upcoming fastball by hitters. He is 4-1 with 76 strikeouts and a 1.15 ERA. "Jack has a great fastball," said , Ionia coach Gary Swinehart. "He very, very seldom throws a curve. He's go! ' one but he doesn't need to throw it." v Grady Davidson, Detroit King j Davidson is only a junior but anj, discussion of prep pitchers in Michiga,n must include this left-hander. King coach John Wilson has no trouble figuring Davidson's ERA it's -0.00. He is 3-1 and his only loss was a VZ 0 decision to Detroit Central when 7 did not allow a hit. (A walk, a wild -pick-off throw and a sacrifice fly acr counted for the only run.) ' That was one of three no-hitters',," Davidson has thrown and last week in.u the matchup with Cass Tech, Davidson allowed only one hit. In 28 innings he has struck out 67 batters. His idol, oi course, is Doctor K D wight Gooden. " "I don't think about striking every-; body out," Davidson said. "I just try to throw the ball over the plate." As a sophomore, Davidson had 125 strikeouts in 56 innings when he had a . 5-2-1 record. "He works hard at his game and he knows the game," Wilson said. "He " studies the hitters and he remembers what they did. He is able to change up his pitches and he keeps the ball down low. He has a good live fastball and a good curve that keeps them off stride." Davidson said he zeroes in on the leadoff batter of each inning. "I keep the pressure off by getting the first batter," Davidson said. "1 concentrate on getting him out and then I go after the next one." Against Cass Tech, the speed gun registered Davidson throwing as high as 87 miles per hour. He was consistently throwing in the mid-80s. "Someday I'd like to be in the major leagues," Davidson said, "but I'm going to college first. That's what I want to ' do." BOYS BASEBALL: Birmingham Brother Rice, ranked No. 1 in Class A, plays Harper Woods Bishop Gallagher in a Catholic League doubleheader Wednesday at 4 p.m. at Brother Rice. Bishop Gallagher, which has dropped to Class B, won the Class A state title last season. BOYS TENNIS: There are 31 regionals Friday and Saturday. Cranbrook, which has won. the last five years, is favored again to win in Class B. Cranbrook hosts its regional, beginning each day at 9 a.m. Redford Catholic Central is the defending state Class A champion and will also play at home, beginning each day at 9 a.m. GIRLS LACROSSE: The Midwest Invitational girls lacrosse regionals are Saturday , and, Sunday at Cranbrook-Kingswood Fields in Bloomfield Hills. Bloomfield Hills Academy of the Sacred Heart (7-1) and defending champion Worthington (Cokim-bu$; Ohio) are the favorites.Grosse Pointe University Liggett, Detroit Country Day and t.ingswood also have strong teams. Play hpgihs Saturday at 8:30 a.m. and runs until 5 30 p.m.. Sunday's final is at 2:30 p.m. Aldred, a lefthander who has signed with the University of listens to you. They don t come around like him very often." After an excellent football season, Aldred was recruited by Central Michigan and Western Michigan for football but he held out for U-M's baseball offer. "I like baseball over football," he said. "Football was just another sport. It was something to do to keep in shape. I liked the practices." Charles Weaver, Cass Tech After pitching Cass Tech to the Public School League championship last season, Weaver was projected to be the state's top pitcher this year .But his stock has dropped a bit because of some mediocre outings. He still, however, is certainly a Division I prospect. Weaver looked shaky in an 1 1 -0 loss to Detroit King last week, but he is 5-2 this season. (Weaver's other statistics were not available). "He has pretty good control, most of the time," said Cass Tech coach Clarence Wynn. "He has an excellent curve. He has two speeds on his curve-ball he throws it fast and he can take something off it. When he works a lot he has better control. I think he needs to get better mentally. I think he thinks too much on the mound." Tim Lata, Bishop Foley s Lata was 5-1 with a 0.30 ERA as a junior and he followed that with a very good summer pitching for the Ferndale American Legion team, assuring that college coaches would checked him out this spring. He has disappointed no one. He is 5-1 with a 1.11 ERA and 72 strikeouts in 44 innings. He has given up only 19 hits and 16 walks. "Tim comes over the top with good velocity," said Foley coach Pat Hearns. "He also has a curve and he mixes in a split-fingered fastball that just drops off the table. When it's working it's really something. He's a smart pitcher he's very intelligent." Bill Bragg, Bishop Foley Bragg might be the state's best kept secret. After the scouts finish watching teammate Lata, they often pack up and go home. But that's a mistake. "I tell these scouts, 'Hey, this guy's a good pitcher, too,' '.' Hearns said. "I don't think there's a mile-per-hour difference between Lata and Bragg. They both throw in the upper 80s." In 44 innings, Bragg is 5-1-1 with 75 strikeouts and a 1.90 ERA. "Bill has great velocity and he throws very hard," Hearns said. "He's pitched all year behind Tim and not griped one bit. He wants to win and he's an intense young man. He's going to make somebody a good pitcher." Dave Johnson, Davison Johnson is typical of the class of '86 there have been more talented players but he is someone you want on your team. Johnson, who has signed with Michigan State, is 5-2 with a 1.95 ERA. In 40 innings, he has 74 strikeouts and 18 walks. "He does throw strikes," said Davison coach Ted Mahan, one of the state's top coaches. "He has a good arm and he challenges hitters. He has good command of his fastball and he throws a good changeup. Basically, what he Is is a competitor; he's a fighter. He keeps us in games on his guts. These are the kind of kids you like to have." Jack Skoog, Ionia Often times, baseball coaches take the football team's quarterback and make him a pitcher. 1 It works in Grand Ledge where Jason Cornell won his first seven games. It worked at Westland John Glenn where Steve Irwin pitched well enough to sign with Eastern Michigan. And it is working in Ionia. Skoog is headed for San Diego State where he will play only football. Until then he is having a ball blowing his Michigan, was 2-2 before he dislocated his right shoulder sliding back into first base on an attempted pickoff play. Al-thoueh the first nominations diagnosis was Scott Aldred that his season was over, Aldred still hopes to play this season. His 2-2 record is deceiving a 2-1 loss came in eight innings when he gave up to unearned runs; and two unearned runs were part of a 3-2 loss. In 22 innings he struck out 43 batters and had a 0.81 ERA. "He's got good size and he throws in the mid-80s. at least." said U-M coach ffigh school athletes in any sport may be nominated as a prep star based on their previous week's performance. Coaches should call Angelo Veneri at 222-6664 from noon to 4 p.m. on Friday or

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