Profile: Before heading to Holy Cross, Pioneer’s Lowder has a few things to cross off his to-do list

By Terry Jacoby/
     Pioneer’s Drew Lowder entered Saturday’s game with Grosse Pointe North a few minutes into the first quarter and, like a hurricane, blew the entire direction of the game in a completely opposite direction. His incredible ability and presence changed the momentum, and frankly, Grosse Pointe North never had a chance.Lowder is one of those special players who only come along every so often where his skill is matched by his confidence and his swagger is backed up by his individual play and his ability to lead his team.

The senior guard is on point this season – not only by position but by focus.

  “Win it all,” he said after his 23 points helped lead the Pioneers to an easy win over Grosse Pointe North in Saturday’s Ann Arbor Classic game at Huron HS. “That’s the goal.”

While he says that’s always been the goal at Pioneer, this year feels different.

“I think this year is the first year I truly believe we have the team that can get there,” he said. “We have all the tools necessary to go all the way. I think we have a great coaching staff that keeps us in line and focused and working hard.
“We are hungry and excited about this season.”

As the team’s starting point guard, Lowder has always taken a leadership role on the floor. This year he’s trying to be a leader both on and off the court.

“I try to take every opportunity I can to help lead our team,” he says. “We also have some really good seniors on the team and that experience should help us this season.”

The Pioneers have already lost a game this season, falling on Friday to Canton. But Lowder and the Pioneers will use that loss as a learning experience.

“Our first few games I think we fell in love with the three-point shot a little too much,” he said. “The first two games we shot the ball really well but against Canton we only shot 33 percent. We can’t rely just on the three-point shot. We have to run our offense and get to the basket.”

The forecast calls for the “hurricane” to move east in about seven months. Lowder is already signed, sealed and delivered to Holy Cross University and he’s very much looking forward to playing for the Crusaders.

“I really liked it there when I took my visit,” he said. “I really like the academic programs they offer. They walked me through what a typical day would be like as a Crusader and I really liked how it sounded.

“I also felt really comfortable around the players. I also really liked the coaching staff.”

Lowder says Holy Cross has been there “since the beginning.”

“They texted me at midnight the day recruiting started and really showed a great interest in me since day one,” he said. “They have been very consistent in their recruiting and that really impressed me. I just felt at home during my visit.”

Holy Cross, a Division 1 school, plays in the Patriot League. Lowder won’t be the only Ann Arbor freshman lacing it up next year at Holy Cross. Skyline senior Ryan Wade also has committed to the Worcester, Mass., school.

“Ryan and I hang out all the time,” Lowder said. “We are always in the gym together and working out and lifting. I also think we play off of each other really well. I like to drive and drive and kick and he’s a real good shooter so I think our styles complement each other.”

The two played together during a few weeks of AAU ball and Lowder said it went “really, really well.”

“Yeah, I think together we can make some noise in the Patriot League.”

But first he hopes his Pioneers can make some noise in the SEC and beyond during his final season with the purple and white.

“The most important thing for us is to get better every single day,” he said. “We have some good young players who come in hungry and work hard and want to get better. We have to want to play defense and want to dive for that loose ball.”

In other words, do the little things. With Lowder leading the way, doing the little things and the big things could all add up to great things for Pioneer basketball in 2019.


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