Blogs > In the Zone

Jason Schmitt is the editor of, the high school sports website for The Oakland Press. He has served as the sports editor for a number of newspapers, including the Daily Tribune in Royal Oak and the Macomb Daily in Mount Clemens. In his time in the industry, he has covered every high school sport and has served a a beat writer for boys and girls soccer, boys and girls tennis, hockey, wrestling, bowling and cross country.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Showcase matchups all set

The field and schedule for both the MIHL and MPHSH showcases are set and ready to go. And there are a number of great matchups at both.
The Public High School Showcase will open up play on Monday, Feb. 3 at the Chelsea Arctic Coliseum. Nearly 60 teams will compete in nearly 60 games over six days, with the showcase wrapping up play Sunday afternoon. Nineteen Oakland County schools are scheduled to compete.
Some of the more intriguing local matchups - in my opinion - include:
Matchup (time/day)
Rochester United vs. Howell (7:45 p.m., Monday)
Farmington vs. Bay City (7:45 p.m., Tuesday)
Berkley Unified vs. Plymouth Salem (4:45 p.m., Wednesday)
Stoney Creek vs. Howell (6:45 p.m., Wednesday)
Farmington vs. Escanaba (2 p.m., Thursday)
Clarkston vs. Muskegon Reeths-Puffer (3:45 p.m., Thursday)
Lake Orion vs. Bay City (6 p.m., Thursday)
Novi vs. Muskegon Reeths-Puffer (2 p.m., Friday)
Berkley Unified vs. Escanaba (12:30 p.m., Saturday)
Novi vs. Lake Orion (8:15 p.m., Saturday)

Down in Trenton, at the MIHL Showcase, 42 teams will be competing in 42 games over three days at the Kennedy Ice Arena. This showcase is a little smaller than the MPHS Showcase, but the talent level is tremendous. All of the MIHL teams will be there, as will a number of the state's other best teams. Out-of-state (and out-of-country) teams such as the Hill Academy's U17 and U18 teams, the Culver Academy (Indiana) and Upper Canada College will also be testing the competitive waters in Trenton.
Some local games I'll be keeping an eye on from the Feb. 6-8 event are:
Matchup (time/day)
Country Day vs. De La Salle (5:20 p.m., Thursday)
Rochester United vs. Liggett (6 p.m., Thursday)
Hill Academy U18 vs. Catholic Central (4 p.m., Friday)
Rochester United vs. U-D Jesuit (4:20 p.m., Friday)
Upper Canada College vs. Cranbrook (6 p.m., Friday)
Culver Academy vs. St. Mary's (8:20 p.m., Friday)
Hill Academy U18 vs. St. Mary's (10:40 a.m., Saturday)
Culver Academy vs. Cranbrook (2:40 p.m., Saturday)

Cranbrook-St. Mary's - Part 2
I was fortunate enough to catch the second meeting of the season between St. Mary's and Cranbrook this past Friday night at Wallace. And it was worth the drive and price of admission, for sure. The Eaglets took advantage of some early opportunities, jumping out to a 3-1 lead. But the Cranes showed why they're the best team in the state, rallying for late goals in each of the three periods, then closing the game out just over a minute into overtime on a goal by Mason Schultz.
It was their second win over St. Mary's this season - the first a 6-3 victory back in December. Cranbrook is now 15-0 this year, with wins over ranked opponents St. Mary's (#1 D1 - twice), Catholic Central (#2 D1 - twice), Brother Rice (#5 D1), Plymouth (#9 D1), Livonia Stevenson (#1 D2), Trenton (#2 D2) and Houghton (#2 D3).
The Cranes suffered what appeared to be a potential season-ending shoulder/collarbone injury to junior forward Austin Alger. He was taken to the hospital. My sources tell me there's a chance he'll be able to return this season. Don't hold me to it, but that's great news for the team and to high school hockey. This guy is fun to watch.

On the schedule
This weekend is shaping up to be a doozy. Thursday's Stoney Creek-Clarkston game is a warmup for what will be a terrific Friday and Saturday of high school hockey in Oakland County. On Friday, Catholic Central will travel to Orchard Lake to take on St. Mary's in a matchup of the top-two teams in Division 1. The Eaglets are (11-1-1-1 overall). CC enters 9-1-0-1. As stated above the two teams' four losses are to Cranbrook. They are 20-0-1 against the rest of the state. Something has to give, right?
I will be heading out to Rochester Hills to see Lake Orion face Rochester United in a matchup of two unbeaten OAA Red teams. Pretty safe to say if Lake Orion (4-0 OAA Red) wins this game, it wins the league title. Rochester United enters 2-0 in league play. A win pulls it to within two points of the Dragons with two games in hand. Rochester still has Berkley Unified left on its schedule, so the league title will be anything but set in stone even if it does knock off Lake Orion Friday night.
And then on Saturday, St. Mary's travels down to face Catholic Central at Compuware. Lake Orion takes on Clarkston at the DSC. Farmington plays Berkley on the road. And Rochester and Stoney Creek will face off at the Onyx. We'll be covering them all for MIPrepZone.

MAC/OAA Showcase on tap
The pairings for the fifth-annual showcase (Feb. 1 at the Onyx) will be announced Wednesday. The leagues will base their matchups based on rankings, with slight alterations to avoid repeat matchups as well as potential matchups of teams that may see each other in postseason play. The only thing certain right now is that Lake Orion will face Eisenhower at 6 p.m., while Rochester will play Macomb Dakota in the premiere matchup at 8 p.m. I'll followup with more details as they are provided.

Some top performances from this past week
Sam Miletic, Cranbrook - Miletic exploded for three goals and three assists to lead the Cranes to an 8-2 win over De La Salle.
Jon Carandang, Troy Athens - Carandang scored two goals and had two assists in the Red Hawks' 8-0 win over Fraser. Brad Merola and Brandon Goodes also scored two goals each.
Sam Miletic, Cranbrook - The junior had a pair of goals and assisted on another in the Cranes' OT win over St. Mary's.
Carter Rea, Clarkston - Rea had a hat trick in the Wolves road win Friday night.
John Artemenko, Bloomfield Hills - the junior had a hat trick to help the Black Hawks dismantle the Lakers.
Ian Melrose, Berkley Unified - Scored a pair of goals and assisted on two others to lead the Bears past Stoney Creek, 4-1, Friday night. Teammate Stephen Wroe made 31 saves in goal.
Brandon Pomerleau, Lakeland - Made 32 saves to lead the Eagles past Davison, 2-1.
Brad Hofelich, Novi - Had a pair of goals to lead Wildcats to 4-0 win over Canton. Goalie Austin Petty made 18 saves to pick up the shutout.
Drew Casey, Lake Orion - Scored four goals and picked up two assists in Dragons' 9-3 win over St. Clair Shores Unified. Teammate Alex Giwa notched a hat trick himself and Ryan Szydlowski had five assists.
Jeff Merola, Troy Athens - The goalie stopped 27 shots to lead the Red Hawks past Royal Oak, 3-1

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home