Girls Basketball Finals Flashbacks


Defeated in the MHSAA finals in each of the three previous years, Farmington Hills Our Lady of Mercy finally emerged victorious. The Marlins rallied from 12 points back to defeat Detroit Mumford, 63-52, in the Class A finale at MSU’s Jenison Fieldhouse in East Lansing. Mercy had defeated Mumford in the city championship contest earlier in the year. Trailing 27-15 with just over five minutes to play in the second quarter, the Marlins switched to the press, and cut the lead to three points, 34-31, at the half. All five of Mercy’s players contributed points in the third quarter as the team grabbed a 47-42 lead entering the final frame. Katie McNamara ended the day with 21 points and 10 rebounds to lead all scorers. Mumford’s Debra Walker totaled 18 points, while teammate Michelle Grier added 17 points.

Sophomore Terri Soullier scored 26 points, including six straight buckets in the second quarter to lead Harper Woods Bishop Gallagher to a 50-31 victory over Okemos in Class B. Soullier finished with 12 rebounds and five steals on the evening. Dree Look, the only other player in double figures, led the Chiefs with 12 points.

Plagued early by fouls, Saginaw Carrollton bowed to DeWitt, 51-36, in the Class C contest. DeWitt hit six free throws and jumped out to a 16-8 lead in the first quarter of play as a pair of Cavalier starters were forced to the bench with foul trouble. The Panthers never looked back. Sophomore Kelly Robinson led the winners with 21 points and 15 rebounds, including nine-of-12 shooting from the free-throw line. Freshman Laura Collison scored 11 for the Cavaliers.

Lynnette Royer scored 24 points, including eight-of-12 shooting from the field in the first half, to lead Rock-Mid Peninsula to the Class D crown over previously unbeaten North Adams, 56-40. A 5-3 guard, Royer had played at Perkins High School before a merger with Rock created Mid Peninsula at the beginning of the school year. The senior finished her varsity career with 1,469 points, ranking third on the MHSAA all-time scoring list at the time. Kay Drake led North Adams with 19 points while Becky Hu ll added 10.


Farmington Hills Our Lady of Mercy ended Flint Northern’s four-year championship reign with a 61-58 win, capped by a stunning fourth-quarter rally at University of Detroit’s Calihan Hall. Trailing by 19 at the end of three, Mercy used a full-court trap ping press to get back in the game. It worked, as the Marlins cut the margin to four points with three minutes left. A Vickie Prince free throw put Northern ahead by five, 58-53, but the Vikings turned the ball over on their next four possessions. Amy DeMattia scored six of her 13 points on three buckets to put Mercy ahead for the first time in the contest, 59-58. Free throws by Annette Ruggiero and Mary Rosowski iced the game for the Marlins. Sarah Basford scored 20 to lead the victors. Evette Ot t topped Northern with 18 points.

Heather Hogan scored a season-high 23 points as Manistee defeated Fenton, 43-29 for the Class B title. The victory was bittersweet for Manistee coach Mike Munro. A Fenton graduate, Munro learned much of the game as a gym rat watching the style of Fento n’s coach, LeRoy Decker. Defensively, Manistee’s Louise Stapleton held Fenton all-stater Maria Reynolds to a total of eight points in the contest.

Carrollton captured its second straight Class C crown, and its third title in four years with a 60-32 defeat of White Cloud. Vonnie Thompson led the winners with 22 points and six assists, while Sue Mayes added 18 points. Teresa Harvatich paced the Indians with 18 points.

Leland defeated Portland St. Patrick, 54-41, in Class D. Shawne Brow scored 16 points, Stephanie Chambers 13 and Brenda Kelly added 11 for the Lady Comets. St. Patrick pulled to within five points early in the fourth before succumbing. Karen Kramer ta llied 18 and Laurie Leik added 13 for St. Patrick. It was the third consecutive Class D crown for Leland and Coach Larry Glass, a former men’s basketball head coach at Northwestern University.


Trailing by 20 with two minutes to play in the third quarter, Detroit Cass Tech, led by LaTonya Tate and Sheronda Mayo, rallied to defeat Saginaw, 52-51, in the Class A game at Grand Valley State in Allendale. The Technicians held the defending champion s scoreless over the final 4:16, then scored the game’s final nine points to grab the title. Tate finished with 20 points, including the game-winning three-point field goal with 1:43 remaining. Mayo added 14 points, including eight in the fourth quarter. Sentaria Johnson finished with a career-high 20 points for the Trojans.

Flint Beecher defeated Frankenmuth, 49-34, for the Class B crown. Senior Marie Williams scored 17 points, including six in the third quarter to bust open the game for the Lady Bucs. Poor shooting took its toll on the Eagles, who had knocked off Grand Ra pids Christian in a semifinal thriller. Frankenmuth hit only 29 percent of its shots in the first half, and 33 percent in the entire game. Lynn Pavlicek notched nine points for the Eagles.

Detroit St. Martin dePorres, led by the outstanding defense of guards Natasha Porter and Tuonisia Turner, grabbed its first-ever MHSAA girls basketball title with a 73-50 thrashing of top-ranked St. Joseph Lake Michigan Catholic in Class C. Dana Joubert (first cousin to prep legend Antoine) led the Eagles with 27 points and 14 rebounds. Maureen Nelligan paced the Lakers with 19 points.

Angela Frick and the Walkerville Wildcats posted a 65-59 upset victory over top-ranked Martin in Class D. The Wildcats took advantage of the recently allowed three point shot to overcome Martin’s height advantage. Frick scored 33 points, including a trey that put the Wildcats ahead to stay 50-47. Teammate Angie Bond hit three-of-six from beyond the three-point arc. Julie Davis tallied 31 for the Clippers.


Leading 20-10 in the second quarter, Birmingham Marian went 22 consecutive possessions without scoring, but still came away with a 39-27 vcitory over Flint Northwestern in the Class A Final. Northwestern’s Larecha Jones scored 10 of her 16 points to tie the game at 20-20 in the third quarter before reserve guard Colleen Conway broke the Marian drought with a pair of free throws with 1:32 remaining in the period. Jones, however, responded with a bucket, and Kamena Robinson opened the fourth quarter wit h a layup to give the Vikings their first lead, 24-22. It was short-lived as Conway, who had been avaraging just 2.1 points per contest, scored on another layup and was fouled. Her free throw gave Marian a 25-24 lead it never relinquished. The combined total of 66-points set an MHSAA finals record for fewest points by two teams.

Upended in the semifinals in 1989 by eventual champ Dearborn Divine Child and in 1990 by Grand Rapids West Catholic, long-time Frankenmuth coach Art Pelzer finally emerged with his first MHSAA title as his Eagles downed St. Joseph, 67-54, in an exciting Class B game. With the win, the Eagles ended the year 27-0. The opening two quarters featured outstanding play, with nine lead changes and four ties. Frankenmuth emerged with a 32-23 advantage at the half by scoring the final 11 points. Sophomore Ann Lemire posted a triple double with 17 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists, while senior Jaami McClellan scored 25 points. Kim Knuth led the Lady Bears with 27 points, including seven-for-seven shooting from the free-throw line.

Once-beaten Carrollton used quickness and seven three-pointers enroute to a 63-41 victory over Elk Rapids. Four Cavaliers scored in double figures, led by Gina Humpert with 16 points. Carrollton’s single loss was against Class B champ Frankenmuth.

Auburn Hills Oakland Christian grabbed a slim 22-21 lead at the half, then pressured its way to a 53-36 win over Grand Rapids Covenant Christian for the Class D crown. Despite a distinct height disadvantage, the Lancers forced 29 turnovers by Covenant Christian. Laurie Ales led the winners with 24 points and nine rebounds. Jamie Englesma scored 12 for the Chargers.

—Ron Pesch