Packers host Cards, Tigers meet Yotes, Devils look for #1
By Ken DeLaat, N3 Sports
Given the optimistic assumption that life will indeed return to some semblance of normalcy on Friday we are boldly predicting that action will resume on the hardcourts and local gyms will be filling up with stir-crazy, cabin feverish fans just craving a peek at something that isn’t on a screen. If not, then the following is likely for naught but as we said, the sports department here at N3 World Headquarters are an optimistic bunch.
Central Montcalm (11-0, 8-0) at Newaygo (6-4, 4-3)
Maybe the Hornets got a little rusty with the school being closed all week and will be a bit more off kilter than the Lions from the layoff. Maybe the Lions will play to near perfection during a spell of cold shooting by the visitors.
But those are pretty big maybes.
The Bees are averaging a hair below 70 points a game in their last 5 contests and the closest any team has been in that streak was when Grant came within 34 points last week.
Yes that’s right 79-45 and it was the toughest battle CM has faced since edging Fremont by a mere 30 points to start the new year.
I love this Lions squad. They are tough, resilient, hard working, team oriented and play with a reckless abandon at times. They have solid players and go deeper on the bench than they have for many years. They are, as I have opined before, an incredibly fun team to watch.
But to win this one a lot of things would have go their way. Early in the year they battled the Hornets hard in the CM home gym and did it without the services of defensive wizard Sophia Frisbie. Beyond that the Lions are a better team than they were at the start of the season.
But so are the Hornets and they are riding an unbeaten regular season streak in its second year. Having been bounced from districts last season weighs heavily on CM. They are tearing through the schedule with a vengeance and have independent powerhouse Arbor Prep next on their schedule and an interesting late season game with the high flying Eagles of Kent City.
Not saying the Lions can’t pull off an upset here. They’re the kind of unpredictable team that other coaches hate to see on the other side of the scorers table.
But like I said, a lot would have to go their way and staying out of the foul trouble the Hornets seem to be adept at getting teams into early is going to be crucial if they’re to have a shot here.
Big Rapids ( 4-7, 2-6) at Fremont ( 8-3, 6-1)
The Packers are rolling. Since being energized by a pair of dramatic overtime victories over Newaygo and Grant. They have steamrolled their last two opponents and are solidly in second place a game behind the stellar squad from Stanton. Coach Krim has some serious talent on this team. They can hit from outside play tough on the glass and the defense, particularly in the backcourt, creates a boatload of turnovers.
The Cardinals have trouble scoring and since the break have averaged just 35 a game. They have struggled to put up points against defenses that do not possess what the Packers put on the court.
Coach Krim’s team won’t look past this one or Tuesday’s makeup game with TC despite the looming road trip to Central Montcalm next Friday. Big Rapids will show up and play hard as they always do but the Cardinals lack the kind of depth the Packers put on the court.
Reed City (2-9, 1-7) at Grant (6-6, 5-3)
The Tigers are having a better year than their 6-6 mark shows. Ok they’ve lost twice to the Hornets but so has everyone else who has played them twice. They dropped a heartbreaker to the Packers in overtime and lost 2 to the top teams in the Silver and one against a Sparta team that is holding its own in the brutal OK Blue.
Although this Reed City squad came within a point of Grant when they played them on Coyote turf in mid-December it was not the same Tiger team we’ve seen recently. The offense has kicked it in of late. Throop, Whan, Arends and Co. can outscore most teams they face and the Coyotes are averaging just 26 points in their last four games while the Tigers are putting up about double that in the same span.
White Cloud (8-3, 4-2) at Hesperia (7-5, 2-4)
White Cloud is looking to respond big after a disheartening loss to the first place Eagles last week. It is the first of four games against teams that struggle on offense before a return engagement with Morley Stanwood in a game that would likely decide second place in the Silver.
The Panthers have won just one game less than the Cloud this year. Two wins against a Holton team that has yet to post a victory, one over Muskegon CC who possess but one win on the season, and four against teams in the smaller WM ‘D’ League. While those wins aren’t exactly cakewalks the Indians have lost only to Reed City and a squeaker to Newaygo and held home court against the Panthers with a convincing 60-31 win earlier this year. The Cloud can score if they’re not playing Kent City and a lot of their fans will make the trip across M-20 to support the team.
Hesperia has improved their game a great deal over the past few years and this season’s record is a testament to that improvement.
White Cloud however, can be lethal when they cut loose.
And they need this one to help put last week in the rear view mirror.
North Muskegon (3-9, 1-8) at Holton (011, 0-6)
It’s been a difficult year for the Red Devils.
Last week, however,they nearly picked off a pretty good Panther team in front of a very supportive home crowd and I have a good feeling about their chances to get off the schneid Friday night. They are once again at home and facing a Norsemen squad that hasn’t reached 30 points in any of their last 5 games. If the Devils can grab an early lead and keep some offensive pressure on NM they could erase that dreaded zero from the win column.
Tigers lose, Vikings win, Lions sit
Fremont 51 Reed City 27
The Packer defense just simply shut down the Coyotes holding them scoreless in the first and arriving at intermission with a commanding 25-6 lead.
Coach John Krim:”We were a very balanced team tonight as we had one of those rare nights when all team members scored and the team finished with a season high 15 assists.”
While the defense would never rest, the offense was led by a 15 point performance by Paige Vandenberg including the 7 she dropped on the Yotes in the first quarter Torey Reichert-Slater canned a season high 7 points while Calla Miller hit for an even half dozen. Natalie Jamieson took charge on the glass with 8 boards and also nabbed 5 steals and Haley Zerlaut dished out 4 assists on the night.
With their 4th straight win the Packers solidify their hold on 2nd place in the Gold with a 6-1 mark while posting an 8-3 overall record.
Kent City 76 White Cloud 31
There is no doubt who rules the Silver.
The Eagles took their hosts out of the game early and flew to a dominating win, their 10th in a row against no losses.
KC spark plug Kenzie Bowers drained a team high 22 points.
Hesperia 54 Holton 49
The Panthers improved to 7-5 for the season and 2-4 in the Silver as they handed the Red Devils their 11th straight loss.
Emily Bayle pacd the Panther attack with 22 points, Makenna Swisher knocked down 17 and Alyssa Miller hit for 11.
Central Montcalm 79 Grant 45
The Hornets continue to be undefeated and atop the Gold as they ran away from Grant. Earlier in the season the Tigers came within 5 points of CM at home but the Bees, playing in the friendly confines of their home nest made certain of the outcome would not be close unleashing a scoring barrage that overwhelmed their visitors.
The Tigers saw their 3 game winning streak snapped and now sit in third place in the Gold with a 5-3 mark. Grant is an even 6-6 for the season and will welcome in Reed City next Friday.
Tri County 50 Big Rapids 41
The Vikes took a 27-18 lead at the half and held off the Cardinals to move to 3-3 in the Gold and 5-4 overall.
Holly McKenna had 16 points for the Cards.
Newaygo at Chippewa Hills ppd.
Tigers, Indians, Vikes lose conference tilts
Grant v CM Photos by Alicia Jaimes
Fremont 60 Reed City 49
The Packers avenged their lone loss of the season in front of their home fans but it didn’t come easy.
The Coyotes took and early lead and stayed in front well into the third quarter. Down by 10 with 3 ½ minutes to go before the final frame the Packers staged a dramatic comeback led by their strong bench as Chris Kennedy, Braiden McDonald and Tristan Campbell sparked the offense and gave the hosts their first lead at 43-41.
The fourth began with the Pack pushing the lead to 10 before the visitors scored again. The Coyotes weren’t done as they rallied to get within 5. With two minutes to go they began sending Fremont to the line in an effort to chip away at the lead but the Packers performed at the line with Joshua Zerfas Calvin Miller and Carter Moon converting to put the game out of reach.
Miller finished with 17 points while taking down 8 rebounds while Logan Karnemaat ruled the paint as he rejected 7 Coyote shots grabbed 10 boards and dropped in 13 points for good measure. McDonald also reached double figures in scoring with 10 points and Kennedy’s 8 points off the bench proved to be huge for the Packers. Carter Moon hit for a half dozen and Zerfas dished out a team high 5 assists.
Coach Zerfas: “ Like all of our games this season it was a total team effort. We rotate 10 players most every quarter and different players step up big every game. Not many times down 10 with 2 minutes to go in the third I would have all my starters on the bench but this is a different type of team. We win by committee.”
Fremont now stands all alone atop the Gold with a 6-1 mark and with their 9th straight win their season mark sits at 11-1. They will be back into action Tuesday when they go on the road to face their former rivals from the Lakes 8, Orchard View.
The Coyotes fall to 6-2 in conference play and 9-3 overall.
Central Montcalm 56 Grant 45
The Tigers came up short in their conference battle with the Hornets.
Carter Chase led the team in scoring with 20, followed by Brett Long with 8. Connor Vanderwilt and Seth Schuitema added 7 and 6, respectively and Elliott Butchart contributed 4.
Asher Vissman led the Bees with 22 points
Kent City 61 White Cloud 32
The Eagles flew to 15-4 lead after one then pushed the advantage to 36-12 by intermission. Steven Holt and Chance Montemayor led the Indians with 7 points apiece and Tom Feldpausch added 6.
Eli Carlson led KC with 22 points.
The Indians fall to 2-4 in the Silver and 2-11 overall. The Eagles are now 4-2 in conference play and 7-6 for the season.
Big Rapids 57 Tri County 29
The Cardinals continue their rejuvenated run with the road win over the Vikings. It was the 5th straight for BR who are mow 5-3 in the Gold and 8-5 overall. TC falls to 0-7 in conference play and 2-11 on the season.
Holton 73 Hesperia 44
The Red Devils won their 4th straight conference game as they hold onto second place in the Silver with a win over the rival Panthers.
Michael Ward had a game high 18 points for Holton. Jacob Klemundt paced Hesperia with 14 points and Johnny Segura hit for an even dozen. The Red Devils improved to 6-6 overall and 5-1 in the CSAA Silver. Hesperia dropped to 0-14 overall and 0-6 in the CSAA Silver.
Newaygo at Chippewa Hills ppd.
By Ken DeLaat N3 Sports
Two huge games on tap Friday with title hopes on the line. In Girls White Cloud welcomes in the Silver leader Kent City for a rematch and in Boys Fremont looks to atone for their lone loss of the season when Reed City comes to town. Holton’s Boys are making a run and sit alone in the second seat in Silver and Fremont sits a mere game behind the Hornets in the Gold Girls race. Grant will see how the match up in their second try against CM Girls who haven’t been lost a regular season game in two years.
Kent City 5-0, 8-2 at White Cloud 4-1, 8-2
Think the Cloud wants this one?
This is the best team the Indians have fielded in quite a while and the Eagles have stood in the way of their ascension to the top of the Silver. To make matters worse they not only delivered one of the Indians losses they took them clean out of the game early , laid it on big and shut them down in the Aerie holding them to 21, nearly 35 points under their average.
This time they are in White Cloud and the fans should turn out big for this one,
And those two losses by KC? The teams they played are a combined 21-1 on the season.
Hannah Brown will be seeing a lot of players coming at her and aiming to limit her points so getting some early help from her teammates will be vital. She knows how to dish the ball and if those dimes result in scoring things will open up for her.
But the Eagles are a seriously good team. If they jump out early watch out They know how to hold a lead and they never, ever let up.
Grant 5-2, 6-5 at Central Montcalm 7-0, 10-0
The Tigers are the only team to stay in the game against the Hornets. CM is deep, talented and seem to swarm all over the court. The one time they were held under 60 points since the Grant game was against the defensive juggernaut of Carson City Crystal and they still won by 17.
Grant has won 5 of 6 and the lone loss in that span came when Fremont’s Chloe Shriver hit a shot as time expired to send the game into an overtime the Pack would win. The Tigers can grind it out and Kirstyn Throop is one of the area’s true clutch performers.
This is only the 4th home game of the season for the Bees and their crowd loves this team that has given them a lot to cheer about the past few years. The Tigers will have to try to contain an offense with a number of players who can fill the nets at any time and their defense opens up a lot of opportunities
Newaygo 4-3, 6-4 at Chippewa Hills 0-7, 1-9
The Lions have two very winnable road games before returning home to face top dog Central Montcalm. This is one of them but the Warriors won’t go down easy and they are tough on teams on their home court. CH doesn’t seem to have anyone who can go 1:1 with Jaylee Long which opens up a lot of possibilities for the ever improving Lions.
Reed City 1-6, 2-8 at Fremont 5-1, 7-3
The prelim to the boys showdown. The Packers have beaten everyone in the league except CM. The Coyotes have won two games against teams with a combined mark of 1-19. Paige Vandenberg could have a field day in the paint and Calla Miller’s defense will wreak havoc in the CH backcourt.
Hesperia 1-4, 6-5 at Holton 0-5, 0-10
The Red Devils have only been within 20 points of their opponents 3 times. Once was against the Panthers who won by an even dozen earlier this season. Holton lost to Kent City by 66 points last week. The week before Hesperia lost to the Eagles by 64.
Big Rapids 2-5, 4-6 at Tri County 3-3, 5-4
The Vikes beat the Cards in overtime in Big Rapids earlier in the season.
Reed City 6-1, 9-2 at Fremont 5-1, 10-1
This is where the Packers wanted to be when the rematch arrived. Winners of 9 in a row since being jostled by the Yotes in Reed City and poised to match up with the co-leader in a game that just might help decide the crown.
Undefeated at home and with a boisterous crowd behind them the atmosphere looks to be electric in the Fremont gym. The Coyotes will likely look to get Karnemaat in foul trouble early but this is a Packer team with some serious depth and a lot of people who can knock it down. A key factor early on will be how physical they will be allowed to play as these two strong teams will be looking to test each other and neither squad is shy about banging bodies on the boards
Newaygo 4-3, 7-4 at Chippewa Hills 1-6, 4-7
Warriors held their own against Reed City then were blown out by Fremon. They took the Cards to the limit then had to come back late to beat the Indians on Tuesday They generally don’t score a lot but they can play a little D
The Lions lost back to back against league leading Coyotes and undefeated Mohawks. This is an opportunity for them to bounce back and Swinehart will need Cantu , Brummel and Bhyan to have their outside game on. If they can open it up for him inside he will have a field day
Grant 3-4, 6-6 at Central Montcalm 4-3, 5-8
Coach Joe Schuitema’s team is getting better...they just aren’t getting bigger. Limited in size bth n the court and in numbers they live and die by the three point game and when they’re hitting they can light up a gym in a hurry. Seth Schuitema dropped 33 on the Wildcats Tuesday and Carter Chase does so many things well including hitting the clutch shot when needed. The Hornets will present some challenges and were the last team to defeat a smoking hot Cardinal team.They always play tough at home and will be following a tough act with their undefeated girls team opening the evening’s competition.
Big Rapids 4-3, 7-5 at Tri County 0-6, 2-10
The Cardinals woke up after stumbling to a 3-5 start and have fired off 4 wins in a row beginning with a take down of the Coyotes in that vaunted Reed City gym. Those 4 wins are by a total of 11 points or less than 3 points a game. Earlier this year they posted a 50 point drubbing of the Vikings and while TC has improved it was still 50 points.
Kent City 3-2, 6-6 at White Cloud 2-3, 2-10
The Eagles won by more than 40 points at their first meeting. The Indians couldn’t solve the KC defense and couldn’t find the basket all night. They’re shooting better but they will likely need close to 60 points to have a shot and they’ve only gotten there once against a team less talented than the Eagles.
Hesperia 0-5, 0-13 at Holton 4-1, 5-7
The Red Devils are surprising a lot of folks and it looks like the success of the football team has been contagious. The Panthers are a game group of six who will wear down by sheer attrition if anyone gets in foul trouble.
Morley Stanwood 5-0, 11-0 at Lakeview 1-4, 3-8
The Mohawks are a very good team playing a struggling Wildcat team
Brown rifles in 10 from downtown in WC win
White Cloud 71 Chippewa Hills 51
White Cloud fired off 17 triples including 10 off the hands of Hannah Brown as they scorched the Warriors for their 5th consecutive win.
Brown finished with 34 points while dishing off 5 assists and grabbing 4 steals and Olivia Bowman knocked down 14 points including a foursome from three point land. Jemi Perrin pulled down 7 boards to go with her 7 points and 6 assists.
The Indians, now 8-2 0n the season and 4-1 in the Silver face the only team above them in the standings Friday when the high flying Eagles of Kent City arrive in town.
Morley Stanwood 51 Newaygo 49
A 14-4 advantage at the free throw line and a dominant performance on the glass made the difference as the hosts held off a late Lion charge to capture the win. The Mohawks out rebounded their cross conference opponents 30-16.
Jaxi Long fired in 22 points and Jaylee Long knocked down 15 with each nabbing a quintet of steals but it wasn’t quite enough on this night as the Morley team held home court and moved to 6-4 on the season with a 3-2 mark in the Silver. The Lions also sit at 6-4 and hold a 4-3 record in the Gold.
Breanna Berry led the Mohawks with 15 points.
Tri County 60 Holton 40
The Vikings snapped a 3 game losing streak while keeping the Red Devils winless on the season.
Grant 52 Lakeview 40
The Tigers won their 3rd in a row as they defeated the Wildcats on the road.
Hesperia 53 MCC 36
Tigers, Packers Post Non Con Wins
Lions, Cloud, Cats fall short
Morley Stanwood 70 Newaygo 48
The Lions held the lead after one and trailed by a pair at the half against an undefeated Mohawk squad.
Then came the third quarter. The visitors fired in 25 points and held their hosts to 9 as they took control of the game with an 18 point lead heading into the 4th. It was the 11th win in a row for the Silver leading ‘Hawks. For Newaygo it was the first time this season they have dropped two in a row and their record now stands at 7-4 with a 4-3 conference mark. They will return to conference play Friday as they hit the road to Remus to take on the Warriors of Chippewa Hills.
Fremont 51 Whitehall 37
The Vikings held down the Packer offense and reached intermission trailing by just a point before the Packers came out of the locker room and fired off a 23-6 scoring advantage to take control of the non conference game.]
Coach Pete Zerfas: “Whitehall played extremely well keeping it to a half court grind it out game. After shooting 50% or over for 4 straight games, tonight they just would not fall early. Credit Whitehall's defense. We talked at halftime that we need to be able to win these type of grind it out games and executed both our offense and adjusted defense great in the third.”
Six different packers scored in the third led by Logan Karnemaat who drained 10 of his team high 16 points in the period. Calvin Miller had 10 points on the game, Braiden McDonald hit for 6 and Joshua Zerfas added 5. Carter Moon added 5 assists to an outstanding defensive effort on the night.. Ethan McKenzie led all scorers with 20 points for the Vikings.
The Packers are now 10-1, and 5-1 in the Gld. Their lone loss of the season was to co-leader Reed City who visit Fremont Friday.
Chippewa Hills 43 White Cloud 42
The Cloud was looking to make it two in a row and after taking the lead early they held back the Warriors right up until the final minute of the game when CH rallied to escape with the win.
A balanced scoring attack saw Sam Venema lead the Indians with 11 points, Dexter Cox hit for 10 and Jake Faster and Steven Holt each canned 9.
White Cloud is now 2-10 and 2-3 in the Silver. They will host Kent City on Friday in a conference matchup.
Grant 76 Lakeview 59
The Tigers jumped out to 35-26 halftime lead and never looked back knocking down 11 3-pointers in the process while going 7-7 from the charity stripe.
Seth Schuitema led the Tigers with a career high 33 points.Connor Vanderwilt hit for 15 and Carter Chase finished with 11.
The Tigers even their season record at 6-6 with a 3-4 conference mark. They will head to Stanton Friday to take on the Hornets of Central Montcalm (5-8, 4-3).
Muskegon Catholic 60 Hesperia 39
The Panthers fought their way to a 16-16 tie early in the second period but the Crusaders fired off a 16-0 run to take control and secure the win
“We struggle to score, but my guys never quit,” said Coach Bolles. “ We’re scrappy and we showed that again tonight against a solid MCC squad.”
The Panthers were led by senior Jacob Klemundt with 16 points,including 4 triples on the night... to go with his five steals and five rebounds. Logan Balkema also reached double figures with 11 points
Hesperia now 0-13 overall and 0-5 in the CSAA Silver and will face their down-the-road rivals at Holton Friday.
Montague 44 Holton 42 (Monday)
Hauling Home The Hardware
Fremont Wrestling Claims Title at the Hopkins Invitational
The Packers have found a lot of success this season and when it comes to tournaments they have marched through their brackets and generally dominated pool play. The finals however, is where they have run into a roadblock while competing against some of the top teams in the region.
Saturday they knocked that roadblock down posting 41 pins enroute to the trophy stand at the Hopkins Team Tournament.
Chase Knudsen with 4 pins at 160 and Chaz Wheater who went undefeated at 285 with 5 pins took top individual honors. Trey Breuker placed second at 152 as did Austin Kukal at 285 and Gage Breuker battled to a third place finish at 119.
Other Packers that contributed to the team's victory were: Eli Beasley, Matt Halasinski, Jager Kibart, Kyler Kolk, RJ Thome, Matt Long, Gage Montague, Caden Christofferson, Dennis Halasinski, and Payton Mansfield.
The top 5 team scores were:
Cloud snaps streak, Tigers get edged at home
Photos by Alexis Mercer
Reed City 73 Newaygo 62
The Lions may have fallen short in their matchup against the conference co leaders Friday but the scrappy squad refused to yield to a hot shooting and opportunistic Coyote team. Several times the visitors had their hosts on the ropes and on the brink of a blowout but the Lions clawed back to stay in contention before running out of time.
Reed City was coming off a week’s rest from their disappointing loss at home to the Cardinals and put their impressive offensive weaponry on display early jumping to a 10-2 lead before Noah Cantu hit one followed by a steal and basket by Kade Bhuyan. Swinehart answered a Coyote bucket with a three pointer and the Lions were within 3.
RC went on an 9-0 run to go up a dozen then Cantu hit for two and followed with a three. Two Coyote fouls shots followed and the quarter ended with the visitors on top 23-14.
The teams played fairly even from then on with Reed City pushing the lead into double figures only to have the Lions find a way back into the game. Early in the third the Coyotes built the lead to 19 and it looked to be over but Ryan Brummel scored twice and Bhuyan finished the quarter with a bucket. The 4th began with Bhuyan hitting two from the stripe and a Swinehart triple to make it a 9 point game. A personal foul that evolved into a technical foul sent RC to the foul line where they hit 2 and on the ensuing possession they fired in a three to stretch the lead to 14. From there the Coyotes slowed things down forcing the Lions to send them to the line where they were able to convert and come away with the win.
Swinehart finished with 25 points and 8 boards while Bhuyan and Canti finished with 11 points apiece and Brummel hit for 9. Francisco Rios scored 5 and provided some strong defense in the backcourt.
Preston Johnson (18) Cody Kailing (16) and Payton Hanson (11) each reached double figures as part of the 9 Coyotes who scored on the night.
Newaygo is now 7-3 and 4-3 in the Gold while Reed City moves to 8-2 on the season and 5-1 in conference play.
(Photo gallery at bottom of article.)
Fremont 74 Chippewa Hills 30
The Packers rolled past an overnmatched Warrior team to notch their 7th straight win.The dominant performance began with a 27-10 first quarter that built to a 52-18 margin by the half.
“All 13 packers played in the second quarter and in the second half contributing to a total team effort tonight,” said Coach Zerfas.
By the time the third period was running down the game the running clock was put into place as the lead had increased to 41 points.
Braiden McDonald led the team in scoring with 19 points and Joshua Zerfas had career highs with 10 assists and 5 steals. Calvin Miller finished with 10 points, Logan Karnemaat dropped in 9, and Julian Echavarria finished with 8. Cody Moon grabbed 7 boards to go with his 7 points Chris Kennedy snared 4 steals while hitting for a half dozen points and Jaxx Miller dished out 6 assists. Carter Moon and Noah Christensen added 5 points apiece and Moon collected 5 steals.
Fremont is 9-1 with a 5-1 conference record. They share the top spot in the Gold with Reed City who will be coming to town on Friday.
Big Rapids 44 Grant 42
A packed house saw an exciting game as the Tiger defense held back a strong Cardinal scoring attack before falling just short in the conference tilt. The hosts led by a point late in the game before Trevor Woodard popped in a triple to give the Cards a lead they would hold to the buzzer thanks to a pair of free throws by DJ Lee.
Connor Vanderwilt paced the Tiger attack with a dozen points, Seth Schuitema hit for 10 and Carter Chase knocked down 9.
Cardinal Jackob Martinson led all scorers with 23 points.
White Cloud 52 Lakeview 47
The hosts fell behind early but chipped away at the Wildcat lead and emerged on top in the conference clash. The win snapped a four game skid for the Indians. Cloud players went 11 for 15 at the stripe down the stretch to seal the win.
Steven Holt paced the scoring for White Cloud with 17 points while Dexter Cox dropped in 14, Trent Jones hit for 10 and Jacob Foster nailed 9.
Morley Stanwood 59 Hesperia 28
The Panther 6 took to the court against the undefeated Mohawks who ran their record to 10-0 with the conference win.
”My guys give me everything they have, but we struggle to score,” said Coach Bolles.
Jacob Klemundt led the Panthers in scoring with 10 points. Logan Balkema pulled down 11 rebounds to go with his 9 points.
Kent City 89 Holton 33
Central Montcalm 61 Tri County 57
Photos by Alexis Mercer and Justice Long
Newaygo 42 Reed City 29
The Long sisters accounted for all the Lion offense during a 13-2 run to start the game with Jaylee scoring 8 and Jaxi adding 5. Unable to solve the Newaygo press, the Coyotes yielded a rash of turnovers to put themselves in an early hole. Alison Duddles hit a basket for RC to start the second but a Lily Ruehmeier bucket followed by a pair of sweet scoring passes from Sophia Frisbie to Kendall Mathis, and a Mathis baseline hit put the hosts up 15 before Madelynn Morgan laced a triple for the ‘Yotes to make it an even dozen.
With time winding down in the half the Lions struck again running off 6 quick points by Jaylee Long, Mathis and Jaxi Long to pull into halftime with a 27-10 lead.
The second half the Coyotes looked to slow the tempo and the tactic seemed to cool off the Newaygo offense a bit but the visitors were unable to get much closer as the Lions defense continued to limit their good looks at the basket.
"I thought we played good defense in the first half,” said Coach Thomasma. “ We got a little loose with our assignments in the second half but we were able to hang on. Reed City made a lot of things difficult for us tonight."
Jaylee Long led all scorers with 15 points while Jaxi Long hit for 13 and Mathis knocked down 8 while grabbing 4 rebounds. Emmerson Goodin showed a lot of grit holding her own during some pretty physical inside play and Frisbie created havoc in the Coyote backcourt with her tenacious defense.
Newaygo is now 6-3 on the season and 4-3 in conference play. Reed City drops to 2-7, 1-5.
(Photo gallery of game at bottom of article.)
Fremont 50 Chippewa Hills 23
Paige Vandenberg had a huge 1st half scoring 16 of the 25 Packer points as the hosts built a 10 point lead then ran away after the break.
“Defensively we did a very good job of taking away their dribble penetrating in the 2nd half limiting them to just 7 2nd half points, “ said Coach Krim.
Vandenberg finished with 21 points while Calla Miller and Natalie Jamieson each canned 8. Miller also dished out 5 assists and Jamieson put on a defensive clinic swiping seven steaks while rejecting 5 Warrior shots
The Packers are now 7-3 overall and 5-1 in conference play a game behind league leading and undefeated Central Montcalm.
White Cloud 53 Lakeview 39
The Cloud was lighting it up from a distance Friday with Hannah Brown scorching a quintet of triples and Olivia Bowman adding another 4 from the arc. The hot shooting led to the 4th straight win for the Indian squad.
Jemi Perrin provided a huge spark as she stepped in for the injured Alexis Strait and responded with 9 points and 6 rebounds while dishing off 3 assists.
Brown continues to add to her school scoring record as she drained 27 points to go with 6 boards, 6 assists and a trio of steals on defense and Bowman finished with 12 points.
White Cloud is now 7-2 on the season and 4-1 in the Silver, one game behind Kent City who will be visiting the Cloud this Friday
Kent City 89 Holton 33
Morley Stanwood 66 Hesperia 39
Central Montcalm 70 Tri County 30
Grant 51 Big Rapids 35
By Ken DeLaat
Friday night marks the halfway point in the conference season for area basketball teams and races in each of the CSAA leagues have heated up as expected.
In Girls Gold Central Montcalm isn’t just undefeated., no one has even come close but for one team.
The Tigers gave them a battle at home but the Hornets are unlikely to stumble with a deep and talented team that hasn’t lost a regular season game in two years. A game and a half separate the next four teams with the Packers in front followed by the Tigers, TC and Newaygo. In the Silver Kent City continues to hold the top spot with the Cloud a game back and Hesperia and Holton holding the bottom two spots.
For the Boys the route to the top spot in the Gold was going through Reed City before they were knocked off by Big Rapids and fell into a tie with the Packers. Newaygo is a game back with 2 losses to the co-leaders and Grant is just a game and a half back but staring up at four teams in front of them. The Mohawks of Morley are good. Real good. They are not only undefeated in the Silver, they have a 3-0 record against cross conference teams in the Gold as well. Kent City is a game behind and stayed with the ‘Hawks on the road and Holton is also just one back however they were manhandled by MS in their December contest at the Delta Plex that ended 74-32
Reed City 4-1 7-2 at Newaygo 4-2 7-2
This is a big one and will define the race going forward.The ‘Yotes were rolling through their Gold schedule until last Friday when the Cardinal team showed up and took them down in RC’s home gym, no easy feat at any time. Of course Jackob Martinson dropping 35 on the Coyotes helped the Cardinal cause considerably. The Lions need to contain Zac Saez and Cody Kailing and Connor Swinehart will be challenged inside so a few key three pointers will help free him up
Chip Hills 1-4 3-5 at Fremont 4-1 8-1
The Packers are at home where they haven’t lost.They are healthy, deep, and tall. The Warriors are coming off of three straight losses to start the new year but they have hung around against the top tier teams in the league so they can’t be taken lightly.
They won’t. The Packers might be waiting on the rematch at home against the Coyotes next Friday but there are two games to play before that one and this team has been taking care of business at home this year.
Big Rapids 2-3, 4-5 at Grant 3-3, 5-5
The Tigers have played well but are hurt by a lack of depth with just 8 players on the team. This game features a pair of the best players in the league. If Martinson gets hot early for the Cards it could be a long night for Grant defenders but the Tigers have their own scoring machine in Carter Chase. Watching Chase and Martinson on the court is alone worth the price of admission because both are consummate ball handlers with sweet shots.
Lakeview 1-3, 3-6 at White Cloud 1-3, 1-9
Neither team scores a lot so whoever finds a hot hand and makes a run will likely decide the outcome. Each team has a conference win and both are against the much depleted Hesperia squad
Hesperia 0-4, 0-11 at Morley Stanwood 4-0, 9-0
Doug Bolles and his team have weathered a lot of adversity this season going up against teams who have had the luxury of more than one substitute player on their bench. Teams that didn’t have to ask most of your players to go the full 32 every night.
But these guys show up and they show up ready to compete.
As we said in the intro, the Mohawks are a really really good team without a loss. At home and playing a team who has yet to win.
Holton 3-1, 4-5 at Kent City 3-1, 6-5
Are the Red Devils for real? Should find out tonight. The Eagles are a strong team that plays well at home. Both teams have lost to MS but Kent City was decidedly closer. The Devils might struggle to keep up with the scoring power of the Eagles should they make a couple early runs because Holton is unlikely to win a shootout, but if they can keep the score down they might find some of that leftover magic from the football season.
Central Montcalm 3-2, 4-7 at Tri County 0-5, 1-9
The Hornets are in the thick of the Gold race after shaking off a 4 game skid with a pair of conference wins over the Cards and Warriors. The Vikes are getting better but seem to have scoring lapses that take them out of games.
Reed City 1-4, 4-6 Newaygo 3-3, 5-3
The Lions are an enigmatic team who can look unstoppable when they limit turnovers that seem to come in bunches at times.Jaylee Long makes the engine fire. Her intensity is shared by her teammates who leave absolutely nothing on the court at game’s end. Lily Reuehmeier was not in the lineup during the lss to Grant on Tuesday and she was missed as was the inside presence of Emmerson Goodin who saw most of the game from the bench due to foul trouble. When all the parts are in place this is a formidable team and the Coyotes will have a hard time if the Lion offense is clicking.
Big Rapids 1-4, 3-5 at Grant 4-2, 4-5
The Tigers were impressive in their win over Newaygo Tuesday. Kirstyn Throop spent so much time at the free throw line she started getting mail there and Arends, Male, and Whan seemed to be everywhere on defense. The Cardinals don’t have any players who will light up the scoring sheet.
The Tigers do.
Chip Hills 0-5, 1-6 at Fremont 4-1, 6-3
Two Overtime wins in a row for the Pack a scrappy group of players with talent. Paige Vandenberg, Calla Miller and Natalie Jamieson have settled nicely into their roles and Chloe Shriver has ice in her veins when it comes to crunch time. Lots of good players, fun team to watch. The Warriors have lost a couple of close ones in conference play but they are going to have trouble scoring against this Packer defense.
Central Montcalm 5-0, 8-0 at Tri County 3-2, 4-3
The Hornets went undefeated last year then got bounced in the districts by a Big Rapids team they had beaten twice earlier. They are on a mission and capturing the Gold again is just a part of that mission. The Vikings have some talent, but have dropped 3 of their last 4 and the swarming defense of the Bees enables lengthy and productive offensive runs.
Lakeview 2-2, 4-4 at White Cloud 3-1, 6-2
The Cloud is rolling. They’ve won 5 out of 6 since the loss to Kent City 6 weeks ago and face a Wildcat team that is unlikely to keep up with the scoring ability of this group led by sharpshooter Hannah Brown. Next Friday the Eagles land in WC for a rematch on the Indian home court, but while that game might be looming in the minds of the players they will have no trouble being focused on the game at hand.
Hesperia 1-3, 5-4 at Morley Stanwood 2-2, 4-4
We haven’t heard much about the Panthers but they’ve won a few games along the way and the Mohawks have played decent ball with losses to KC and WC in conference play.
Holton 0-4, 0-8 at Kent City 4-0, 7-2
The Eagles have a whole lot of firepower and can smother a team when they press. The Devils haven’t won a game and that streak is unlikely to end Friday