Dexter fans had to admit it. Even early in the fourth quarter and leading by eight points, they had to admit it. There was an uneasiness on the Dexter side of the gym. This was Ypsilanti the Dreadnaughts were playing – and beating. State-ranked Ypsilanti. Powerhouse Ypsilanti. Steve Brooks coached Ypsilanti.
History clearly shows these games between Dexter and Ypsilanti never end well for the Dreadnaughts. But something happened on the way to the collapse. It never happened. Not even close.
Leading by nine points, Dexter’s senior guard Drew Bishop fired a triple from the wing – nothing but net. The Dreads led 45-31.
Less than a minute later, Bishop got the ball near the top of the key and let it fly – nothing but net. The Dreads led 48-33.
Time out Ypsilanti. Relax, breathe Dexter.
Bishop finished with a team-high 14 points to lead the host Dreadnaughts to a 55-47 victory – going away, by the way – over Ypsilanti.
Zach Condron and Caden Doll each scored 11 and Brady Rosen scored eight for the Dreads.
The Dreadnaughts made 19 of 29 free throws while the visiting Grizzlies made just 4 of 11 from the free-throw line. Dexter wasn’t exactly shooting the light out but they were relentless on the defensive end and caused havoc switching from zone to man throughout the evening. Ypsilanti just never put that devastating run together.
A triple by Rosen got the Dreadnaughts on the board and a 3-2 lead. But Ypsilanti took an 8-3 lead with 3:49 left in the opening quarter.
But two straight jumpers by Doll gave the Dreads an 8-7 lead. A three-point play by Condron gave Dexter a 10-8 lead with 2 minutes to play in the opening quarter. And bank shot by Bishop gave the hosts a 12-11 lead after one period.
The Dreads dominated the second quarter and proved to themselves that they could play with the talented and state-ranked Ypsilanti club.
After Ypsilanti tied the game at 15-15, Josh Paquin scored inside and Bishop delivered a floater in the lane to make it 19-15 with 3 minutes left in the second quarter. A jumper by Paquin along the baseline gave the hosts a 21-17 lead with 2 minutes on the clock.
The Dreads finished with six consecutive free throws to take a 27-19 lead into halftime.
Both teams struggled on the offensive end in the third quarter. Rosen finally scored for the Dreads with 4:10 left on a jumper inside to make it 29-21. A jumper by Doll gave Dexter a 31-21 lead with 3:20 left in the third quarter.
But Ypsilanti started to show signs of offensive life and cut the deficit in half at 35-30 after three quarters.
The Dreads made a statement on their first possession of the fourth quarter. Nick Feliccia nailed a wide open triple from the wing to give Dexter a 38-30 lead. Doll made another statement just seconds later when he took a breakaway pass and slammed home two points to give the hosts a 40-31 lead with 7 minutes left in the game.