Detroit Country Day is headed to the Final Four of the Class B girls basketball state tournament for the third consecutive year.
The Yellowjackets earned that distinction by topping Mumford, 58-49, in the state quarterfinal played Tuesday evening at Marysville High School. Country Day (24-1) now moves on to play defending Class B state champion Marhsall (23-2) in a semifinal game set for 6 p.m. Friday at the Breslin Center on the Michigan State University campus.
“I enjoy the fact that we battled tonight and worked our way back to Breslin,” said veteran DCD head coach Frank Orlando. “We’re going to have our hands full with Marshall. But, it’s a great opportunity for our program and a great thing for our kids to be playing in the semifinals.”
Country Day was tested by a pesky Mumford squad which refused to go away.
The Yellowjackets held a seemingly comfortable 36-20 halftime lead. However, the Mustangs showed up strong in the second half.
DCD was outscored in the third quarter and led by just 12 heading into the final eight minutes. Mumford got to within seven points on a couple of occasions against the Yellowjackets whose star player and Miss Basketball candidate Destiny Pitts fouled out.
Country Day managed to control the game and remained alive in the tournament with the hard-earned nine-point victory. It was the first time in five tournament games that DCD was held to less than a double-digit victory.
“It was a tough game for us,” said Orlando, whose team advanced to the quarterfinal round of the state tournament for the 20th straight season. “We were cruising through the first half and then the game kind of evened out. Destiny fouled out and I got a technical. Mumford played hard against us today.”
Kaela Webb led Country Day’s offense with a game-high 20 points. Pitts, a senior guard, finished with 14.
Mumford’s leading scorers were Donette Colbert (15) and Shardaye Yarborough (10).
Country Day lost in the tournament’s semifinal round last year to Grand Rapids South Christian. Two years ago, DCD captured the Class B state title with a tough 49-41 triumph over Haslett.
In Friday’s other Class B semifinal featuring a pair of undefeated teams, Ypsilanti Arbor Prep (26-0), last year’s Class C state champion, will play Freeland (26-0).
The semifinal winners will play for the state championship 6 p.m. Saturday.