Constantine won at Paw Paw 71-59 in Wednesday’s District 48 semifinal game. It was the first playoff win for Falcons boys basketball since 2016, sending them to Friday’s championship against Vicksburg.
It was a rough start for Constantine, as Paw Paw raced out to a 10-1 lead midway through the first quarter. The Falcons countered with a 20-4 run over the next 10 minutes of play, growing their own lead to seven. The Redskins defense had no answer for Trey Salisbury, who scored 12 of his game-high 27 points in the second quarter.
Paw Paw regained some momentum as a Ross Vaickus alley-oop put the game at 25-24 heading into halftime. Constantine wouldn’t trail at any point in the second half, although it remained a single-digit game throughout the third quarter.
The Falcons began to pull away in the fourth quarter with excellent free throw shooting. Constantine finished 25-33 for the night, including a 17-20 mark in the fourth quarter alone. Salisbury had another 10 points in the fourth quarter and achieved a double-double with 10 rebounds. It was their second time this season scoring 70+ points.
Finlay Tate led Paw Paw with 22 points. They finish with a 9-13 record and graduate seniors Andrew Harris, Levi Penning, and Ross Vaickus.
Constantine improves to 8-13 and has a chance at their first district title since 2016 Friday at 7 p.m. from Paw Paw. They face Vicksburg, who beat rival Three Rivers 63-58 in the second semifinal Wednesday.
Trey Salisbury 27 points, 10 rebounds, 1 assist
Davonte Conley 11 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist
Hunter Bacheller 11 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists
Brock Ganus 8 points, 1 assist
Caleb Wisel 6 points, 2 rebounds
Corey King 6 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist
Logyn Miller 2 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist
Free Throws: 25-31
Three Pointers: 4-13
Paw Paw statistics
Finlay Tate 21 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists
Andrew Harris 12 points, 7 rebounds
Ross Vaickus 12 points, 4 rebounds
Mitchell Mason 6 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist
Justin Baird 5 points
Caleb Bowen 3 points, 1 assist
Clayton Bretch 1 assist, 2 rebounds
Levi Penning 1 rebound
Free Throws: 14-20
Three Pointers: 5-14