The sweet part for Allen Park Inter-City Baptist coach Mark Kraatz this season was seeing his son, Evan, pass him on the state's all-time career assist list. In fact, Evan, a 5-foot-11 senior guard, passed by his father; former Wyoming Park and Michigan State standout Drew Neitzel; and Eric Turner (Flint Central/Michigan) to become the state's all-time best ball distributor. He finished his career with 803 assists.
"When you coach a player who breaks a record, it's special," Mark Kraatz said. "When that player happens to be your son and it happens to be a (number) you held, it really brought me to tears. I'm just so grateful to have been a part of that — to have witnessed it."
This season, Evan Kraatz averaged 17.3 points, 9.0 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 4.6 steals, leading the Chargers to an 18-7 record and a trip to the regional final. Kraatz was named the Associated Press Class D Player of the Year.
Fruitport Calvary Christian senior Mike Warren was also named first-team all-state. He averaged 26.5 points and 11.5 rebounds for the Eagles.
Inter-City Baptist fell 67-62 to two-time defending state champion Southfield Christian in that regional final. The Eagles have two players on this year's Class D All-State first team, seniors Demarco White and Lindsey Hunter IV. White averaged 9.2 points and 8.4 rebounds, while Hunter — a four-year starter — averaged 14.3 points and 1.7 steals per game.
Also earning first-team honors in Class D are Brandon Childress of Baldwin, Joey Duncan of Cedarville, Kevin Gamble of Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart, Nick Hincka of Posen, David Loney of Frankfort, Marcus Matelski of Boyne Falls, and Travis Vincent of Powers North Central.
Childress averaged 24.0 points and 8.9 rebounds this season; Duncan averaged 21.0 points and 3.0 steals; Gamble led Sacred Heart with 15 points and 9 rebounds; Hincka averaged 24 points and 7.5 rebounds; Loney averaged 20.2 points and 11 rebounds; Matelski scored 26.5 points and pulled down 9.5 rebounds; and Vincent averaged 16.4 points, 11.4 rebounds and 2.4 steals.
Pat Theisen of Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart earned Class D Coach of the Year honors after leading his team to a 21-3 record and a spot in the quarterfinals.