Samuels off to explosive start on basketball court


REED CITY — If expectations are high for Reed City senior Chad Samuels, then one thing is for certain: Expect the expected.

Samuels had quite a week in the first two games of the season for the Coyote boys basketball team. Samuels netted seven 3-pointers on his way to a career-high 37-point night, along with nine rebounds to lead the Coyotes past Cadillac 76-75. In a 79-46 win over Morley Stanwood, Samuels had 22 points.

His previous high was 25 as a sophomore.

Hitting the threes is all about spending time in the gym, Samuels noted.

“You put up as many shots as you can before practice and after practice,” he said, “and having a lot of confidence. That’s the biggest thing, having confidence as a shooter.”

Samuels indicated after the Cadillac game that an uptempo, fast-breaking Coyote team would be the norm this season.

“We’ve been working on it a lot,” Samuels said. “Last year, we struggled a little bit with the press. Over the summer, we worked on it hard and we understand it well. We run it well right now.”

The Coyotes had three players foul out in their first game, a scenario Samuels and his teammates want to avoid.

“In practice, we just go at each other. We’re all on the football team and we’re physical type of guys,” he said. “In practice, I think we need to clean up a little bit. We lost some key players (against Cadillac). We need to keep our heads on straight and stay with it.”

Reed City got off to a 2-0 start last week, But what can’t be forgotten is the Coyotes had a first-game victory over a Cadillac team that was Class B state semi-finalists a year ago.

“It’s an amazing feeling,” Samuels said. “We knew coming in Cadillac was a great team and we haven’t beaten them in nine years. We’ve had some great teams come through but we’re the team to do it.”

Going into the Morley Stanwood game “we have to focus on our defense, fouls and stopping Timmy (Cairnduff),” Samuels said.

“He’s great shooter and great player. I play with him in AAU. I love him to death. We have to shut him down, play good defense and get the win.”

Cairnduff had one basket from the floor, a 3-pointer, plus 10 free throws and 13 points for the Mohawks in the loss to Reed City.