By Ian Perrotta
Well, there’s always next year.
On Monday (March 8) the Hamtramck High boys’ basketball team played the final game of their season. In the first round of district tournament play, the Cosmos lost to Highland Park 74-45. Though no one had double figures, Eldin Paric and Anthony Nrecaj each had nine points and Junior Djuan Wilson added seven of his own while grabbing several rebounds.
“In this game I think that the disappointments from an entire season of losing close games took its toll,” said Head Coach Mark Nezich.
Last Thursday (March 4) the team played Lamphere in Madison Heights. In this high-scoring game Hamtramck was led by Nrecaj and Javontae Hines, who had 25 and 13 points, respectively. Also contributing were Sadiq Islam, with 11 points, and Mike Kaigler, who had 10 points. However, despite the Cosmos’ impressive offense, Nezich said some key calls down the stretch went to Lamphere, which ultimately helped seal the deal in the 83-78 loss to the Rams.
“I was proud of the way my team played,” said Nezich, “and it came right down to the last 50 seconds.”
In fact, several of the games this year came down to the last minute. Though the final record of the team was 4-16, and the average difference between winning and losing was a mere five points. Many games were decided by a few bad passes or missed shots. More than a few games had some questionable calls by the referees. But regardless of this season’s results, Nezich is optimistic for next year.
“I have a good nucleus returning next year,” he says, “and hopefully they will be able to make the corrections necessary to be more successful.”