Yet another thriller

Published 12:06 pm Thursday, June 21, 2007

By By JEFF FISHER / Niles Daily Star
MISHAWAKA, Ind. – The calendar says it's June, but judging by the intensity on the court by both teams, it clearly felt like late-February Wednesday night at Bethel College.
Team Metro saw a 15-point second half lead dwindle down to four points with under 30 seconds remaining in regulation, but held off a furious comeback led by Paul Curtis (Cassopolis) and Dan Palombizio (New Buffalo) to escape with a 76-74 victory at Sports Fest.
Anthony Lee (South Bend Adams) torched Michigan with a game-high 14 points. Michigan coach Mike Miller remembers Lee doing the same thing against his Bridgman team when the school's met back in January. Adams won the contest 61-56.
"Lee dominated the game there in the second quarter and dominated the rest of the game in all aspects. There are so many good players there," Miller said.
Michigan took an early 23-15 lead on a Curtis jump shot, but a 15-0 run by Metro gave the team its first lead of the night and allowed it to take a 39-31 lead into the break.
"We had that lull in the middle of the first half. I think part of that was that they are not in basketball shape and legs got a little tired," Miller continued. "The other part is we had two practices and at both practices we had the same five guys so it was tough to get any kind of continuity or progress."
Michigan began to chip away at the Metro lead as Curtis and Palombizio scored a combined 17 second half points to cut the Metro lead to four points, 76-72.
"It was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed coaching these kids. I think that it is really neat for the seniors to play one more game. I think that this is a fantastic opportunity for them to do it one more time," Miller added.
After Lee, teammates Carl Steen (Adams) of Metro netted 13 points and Aaron Williams (Adams) added 10.
P.J. Patterson (Eau Claire) paced Michigan with 12 points. Danny Rodts (Niles) had 11 and Palombizio chipped in 10.
Michigan falls to 1-4 in basketball play overall at Sports Fest.