New Haven coach Tedaro France was trying to explain that Rayshawn Griffin was more than just a scorer following his recent 34-point performance.
"The thing about him is he's a prolific scorer, but he plays defense," France said. "This kid wants to guard the other team's best player. He's a tenacious defender, loves to compete and is just a natural leader."
That certainly sounds good, but seriously, did anyone actually play defense in New Haven's 101-98 double-overtime victory over Mt. Clemens.
"Actually, I watched the film and both teams did play defense," France insisted over a muffled laugh. "It was just one of those games where guys are closely defended but kids were making plays on both sides."
The kids on New Haven's side made the most plays, beginning with Tedaro France III's three-point shot at the buzzer that wiped out a 10-point Mt. Clemens lead with 3:30 left in the fourth quarter and forced overtime.
New Haven erased a five-point deficit in the first overtime and then overcame a six-point deficit in the second overtime before recording its sixth straight victory.
"It was just a great high school game; it's one of the best games I've seen in a while," France said. "The fans enjoyed it, not me. Mt. Clemens is a hard place to go play. We just fought on through."
In addition to Griffin's 34 points, New Haven got 23 points from France III and 14 points and 16 rebounds from Jamael Bell.
This is France's fifth year as the head coach at his alma mater. A year ago, the Rockets were 21-4 and advanced to the Class C quarterfinals.
To even get out of the districts this season they will have to beat Mt. Clemens at Mt. Clemens again.
"I have a special group of kids, one that comes along only so often," France said. "Being a small school that doesn't get transfers, you get a good group only every few years.
"They know that hard work can lead to success. Once kids know that hard work pays off, they want to work even harder."