McCabe: Camree’ Clegg comes up big for Wayne Memorial

McCabe: Camree’ Clegg comes up big for Wayne Memorial


McCabe: Camree’ Clegg comes up big for Wayne Memorial


Wayne Memorial's Camree' Clegg

Wayne Memorial’s Camree’ Clegg

The beast was released.

After a first half in which she made only a single free throw in each of the first two quarters, Wayne Memorial’s Camree’ Clegg — a.k.a. The Beast that Swallowed Tokyo — took matters into her own hands.

“That was probably my worst start all year,” Clegg said. “I had to put myself in a mind-set to take over.”

Clegg scored 13 of her 21 points in the third quarter Monday to lead Wayne to a 60-49 victory over host Westland Glenn in a Class A state tournament district quarterfinal game.

Clegg is only 5-foot-5 and doesn’t appear to be big enough to swallow a pizza, much less all of Tokyo.

“My Coach Jarvis actually came up with it,” Clegg said of Wayne’s Jarvis Mitchell. “He just thinks I’m larger than life and I play bigger than myself. Obviously, I’m pretty short so he thinks that I have a big heart and I put so much into this game. So I play like a big person even though I’m small.”

Glenn (11-10), which beat Wayne two weeks ago, jumped to a 27-18 halftime lead behind the brilliant play of Sharon Woodard (16 points).

Monday, Feb. 29 high school sports results

Wayne hit only 7 of 29 shots (24.1%) over the first two quarters but was within striking distance because the Rockets committed 13 turnovers in the first half.

“We came out to a very, very, very rocky start,” Clegg said. “I think we were playing way too fast, way too ahead of ourselves. We just couldn’t hit anything, but we came back after halftime.”

The Zebras came back behind Clegg, who provided a spark, just as she has done much of the season.

“In big games like that, she shows up,” Mitchell said. “She’s just an absolute tough kid. If I can have any player in the state, I’d start with Camree’.”

Glenn trailed by eight early in the fourth quarter before closing to within three. But junior Amara Chikwe scored on an inside move and then finished off a fast break with a lay-up. Clegg followed with a pair of free throws with 2:46 left and Wayne was on its way to the 5 p.m. game Wednesday against Belleville.

“I decided to attack the basket more,” said Chikwe (13 points). “Our shots weren’t falling, so if I attacked the basket strong I would either get fouled or knock it down.”

This has been a remarkable season for Wayne (16-4), which was 0-21 last season. It helped that Chikwe is a transfer from Ann Arbor Huron, 6-2 junior Mya Garrett, who is injured and did not play, is a transfer from Taylor Prep and Clegg is a transfer from powerhouse Birmingham Detroit Country Day.

“The basketball situation for me didn’t work out the way I wanted it to there,” Clegg said. “So I had to get out of there. It was hindering my career a little bit. I had to do what’s best for me.”

Contact Mick McCabe: 313-223-4744 or Follow him on Twitter @mickmccabe1.

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