BASKETBALL: Arico Scores 20 as Saline Downs Chelsea

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 02/28/2018 - 20:08

As the 2017-18 regular season winds down, the Hornets upped their record to 10-9 with a 44-42 win on the road over the Chelsea Bulldogs Tuesday night. Saline took a 5-3 lead early in the first quarter and then never trailed in the game.

The lead got as large as eleven at points during the game but in the end the Hornets played just good enough to pick up the win. Saline Head coach Jacob Fosdick said he was happy with the play of his team. “I was very happy with how we started the game. We got into our offensive scheme and got good looks at the basket.”

Fosdick continued, “we watched game film of Chelsea and thought that we could take advantage of the middle of their defense. We wanted to get Trevor (sophomore guard Trevor “Thunder” Arico) going early and he hit some shots early on.”

Arico led the Hornets with 20 points in the game, on the strength of five three-point shots. Arico sank three 3-point shots in the opening quarter. That scoring was supplemented by senior forward Emmett “The Beast” Turner, junior forward Ethan Friedrichsen and Arico’s sophomore backcourt partner Griffin “Lightning” Yaklich.

Chelsea managed to stay close as junior guard Quinn Starkey hit some three-pointers of his own as the quarter ended with Saline up 16-13.

Arico hit a three point shot seconds into the second quarter to up Saline’s lead to 19-13. Later in the quarter, Arico was fouled while attempting another three-point shot and was fouled. He sank all three free throws to put the Hornets up 24-18.

Senior forward Erik “Baywatch” Wenning sank a three to score his only points of the game which sent the Hornets into the locker room leading 27-22.

“I thought we played tremendous defense in the third quarter,” Coach Fosdick said. “Chelsea is a very good team and we held them to five points.”

It was Yaklich who led the team in scoring in the third quarter. He hit a short jumper thirteen seconds in to up Saline’s lead to 29-22. Yaklich then took a pass and drove the entire length of the court to get an easy lay-up. Friedrichsen added more points from under the basket, with an assist going to Yaklich.

Arico closed out the scoring making an improbable shot with less than a second left on the clock. Saline headed into the final quarter with a comfortable eleven-point lead, 38-27.

Like in other games this season, the eleven-point lead was needed to withstand a last quarter surge by the Bulldogs. Chelsea started the quarter with an 6-0 run and then added another 9-3 run. Suddenly the eleven-point lead was down to two, 42-40 with 0:43 seconds left.

Chelsea applied full-court pressure in attempt to force a Hornet turnover. Coach Fosdick yelled “orange.” With that, Yaklich took off running down the court and Wenning fired a perfect pass that led to an easy lay-up, giving Saline a 44-40 lead with 0:18 seconds left. Chelsea added two points and called a time-out with 0:10 seconds left, and down by two, 44-42.

The Hornets in-bounded the ball and Arico was fouled immediately. And for the first time all night, Arico missed the front end of a one-on-one free throw, which Chelsea rebounded. The Bulldogs raced down the court, got off a contested shot in an attempt to tie the game which missed the mark.

The Hornets walked off the court with a hard-fought 44-42 victory. The win upped their season record to 10-9.

Fosdick said his team will travel to Ypsilanti on Thursday to take on the Grizzlies. Game time is 7 p.m. It is the final game before the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) version of March Madness begins on Monday, 3-5-18.

“We have a couple of days to prepare for Ypsilanti. They are easy to scout but another animal to try and contain.”

The Grizzlies are 18-1 on the season.

Saline opens the MHSAA tournament on Monday at Ypsilanti Lincoln, taking on the Railsplitters. The tip off time for the tournament game is 7 p.m.


1st Star: Trevor “Thunder” Arico (20 points, 1 rebound, 3 assists)

2nd Star: Griffin “Lightning” Yaklich (11 points, 4 rebounds, 9 assists)

3rd Star: Ethan Friedrichsen (6 points, 4 rebounds)                                                                                           


The Hornet JV squad hit a three-point shot in the first thirty seconds of the game, taking a 3-0 lead. It was a lead that the team never gave up. The win upped the team’s record to 12-7 on the year.

Five different players scored in double digits. Sophomore guard Josh Finn led the scoring attack with 16 points. Sophomore forward Tyler Belskus and guard Will Branham each had 13 points while freshman forward Anthony Ferrari and Luke Darmos contributed 10.

Head Coach Jason Pickett said the game was a season high in points scored and was a reflection on how well the kids were playing as a team.

“I have said all season long, team, team and team. When you play together as a team you will win,” Pickett said. “You want to be playing your best basketball as you get closer and closer to March. And we are.”

The JV hoopsters close out their season on the road Thursday when they take on the Ypsilanti Grizzlies. Tip off time is 5:30 p.m.


1st Star: Josh Finn (16 points, 3 rebounds, 9 assists)

2nd Star: Will Branham (13 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists)

3rd Star: Luke Darmos (10 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist)


The Hornet’s freshman team rode a huge first quarter, outscoring the Bulldogs 20-11, scoring a convincing 47-36 win, upping their season record to 12-7.

Freshman Head Coach Brian Whitley credited team defense as the key to the win.

“Kids have been practicing hard and it is starting to show up in games. I am very proud of how they played tonight.”

The freshmen will travel to Ypsilanti on Thursday to take on the Grizzlies. Game time is 4 p.m.


1st Star: Eli Trece (14 points)

2nd Star: John Barnett (9 points)

3rd Star: Fletcher Whitley (5 points)

Steven Sheldon's picture
Steven Sheldon