Tigers split; Newaygo boys, Fremont girls fall short
Newaygo 69 Central Montcalm 37
The Lions are definitely roaring and their Magic Number is down to 2.
Two teams were poised to challenge the Lion supremacy in the Gold this week. On Monday it was Big Rapids, a team that had carved up opponents but for a couple of slips at Morley and CM. They had home court as well but when the buzzer sounded Newaygo left the floor and took the bus home as winners
Next up came the Hornets who had shaken off a 1-3 start that included an opening game loss to the Lions. 7 straight wins put them in the three team race and like the Cards the Buzzers had them in their nest.
But this is a Newaygo team on a tear with a lethal combination of talent and determination.
They won. Easily. The Lions jumped out to a 39-14 lead at the half and were able to keep the Hornets at bay the rest of the contest.
Coach Thomasma:"Our most complete game of the year by far. Central Montcalm is a good team but it was just one of those nights for us. We shot the ball extremely well and played good defense. Goodin played a tremendous game (17 points in the first half) and all of her teammates. played complementary basketball. We had tough back to back games the past two nights and the girls responded well."
Goodin led the Lions with 25 points and 12 rebounds. Jaylee Long had 15 points and 6 assists. Jaxi Long had 5 points and 11 assists. Kayla Fisk finished with 6 points and 9 rebounds.
Everyone on the team got in the scorebook for the Lions.
Newaygo improves to 12-1 (11-0 in conference)
Central Montcalm drops to 8-4 (8-3 in conference)
Big Rapids 48 Fremont 31
The Packers showed some life in their road game at Big Rapids, competing with much better energy than the past few games, but couldn't match the Cardinals' shooting on Tuesday night. They missed multiple shots from point blank range in the first quarter and found themselves in another big hole 16-4 after the first. They settled in during the second quarter and outscored BR 15-13. In fact, Fremont cut the deficit to only 5 at 24-19, but Big Rapids scored the final five points of the half and led 29-19. Big Rapids then slowly expanded their lead in the second half with a 13-8 advantage in the 3rd, and a 6-4 advantage in the fourth. The final score was 48-31.
Calla Miller led the Packers with 11 points. Eight Fremont players scored in the game, but no others had more than 6 points. Big Rapids was led by Rylie Haist's 14 points. Fremont fell to 3-10, 3-8 in the conference.
Coach Zerlaut -- "We played better tonight than we have in the past week. We shared the ball well, limited our turnovers, and got good shots on offense. I was pleased with how we played the game, but we still need to make more shots."
Grant 44 Reed City 31
Big Rapids 39 Fremont 35
The Cardinals inched past the Pack to take sole possession of first place in the Gold.
The visitors broke away in a tight game building a 10 point lead early in the fourth. The Pack came back strong to pull within a bucket but could not close the gap and BR emerged with the win that put them in the drivers seat for the conference crown.
Coach Zerfas:”The pace was definitely in their favor and we were unable to hit the open shots.”
Braidfen McDonald led the pack with 13 points with Joshua Zerfas hitting for 11 while pulling down 9 boards and dishing 5.Payton Mansfield (6) and Martin Curiel (5) also contributed to the offensive output the lowest scoring game since the 35 te Packers put up in a season opening loss.
To Big Rapids.
Fremont (10-4, 9-2) hosts Reed City Friday.
Central Montcalm 49 Newaygo 39
The Lions hit halftime with a 3 point edge on the road and with one quarter to play the teams were tied. That’s when the hosts pulled away finishing strong to capture the conference win.
Wyatt Mortenson notched 17 points and Bryce Decker also reached double figures finishing with 10.
Newaygo (4-8, 4-7) hosts Reed City Friday.
Reed City 56 Grant 55
The host Tigers fell behind to the hot shooting Coyotes 12-25 at the end of the 1st quarter. The Tigers stepped up their game on both ends of the floor and trimmed the lead to 44-45 at the end of the 3rd quarter. The 4th quarter saw a combined 32 Free Throw attempts as the Tigers failed to convert in the final seconds in a losing effort.
Seth Schuitema led the team in scoring with 23, followed by Cole Lesley and Elliott Butchart with 11 and 6. Gage Burrows and Payton Swinehart chipped in 5 each.