Breslin Bound: Girls Report Week 8

January 25, 2016

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

A total of 19 teams over four classes remain undefeated as we reach the midpoint of another girls basketball season.

But a number of others aren’t far behind – more than 140 teams have lost only two or fewer games.

Each week during the regular season, we’ll glance at four teams from each class that have caught our attention. (Results and records below are based on schedules posted at

Class A

Caledonia (10-1) – The Fighting Scots have won seven straight, kept alive with a 43-41 win over Grand Rapids Christian on Friday – and are only a one-point loss to Byron Center from perfection.

Flushing (9-2) – Following up handing Detroit Renaissance its second loss, two weeks ago, Flushing nearly doubled up solid Flint Carman-Ainsworth and further extended its lead in the Flint Metro League with a win over Swartz Creek. 

Southfield (9-0) – The Blue Jays’ perfect run so far has included only one win by fewer than 10 points – 46-42 over Harper Woods Chandler Park on Dec. 8 – and they have won 19 straight regular-season games.

St. Joseph (10-1) – The Bears trail Stevensville Lakeshore in the Southwestern Michigan Athletic Conference West because of a 58-55 loss to the Lancers on Dec. 11 – but St. Joseph gets a rematch Feb. 5 and is two wins better than at the midpoint last season. 

Class B

Frankenmuth (10-1) – Only undefeated Bay City John Glenn has beaten the Eagles, 41-23 on Dec. 7, and Frankenmuth has downed the next four teams chasing in the Tri-Valley Conference East including handing second-place Birch Run its only loss.

Marshall (10-1) – The Redhawks are undefeated after falling to Williamston 40-33 on opening night, and two weeks ago Marshall handed Jackson Northwest its only loss to earn a one-win lead in the Interstate 8 Athletic Conference.

Pontiac Notre Dame Prep (9-1)  -- The Fighting Irish have won nine straight since opening night, when they fell to Macomb Dakota 49-31; Notre Dame Prep hasn’t had a game closer than 10 points since Dec. 18.

Stevensville Lakeshore (9-0) – The Lancers are halfway to a third straight league title in the SMAC West and have yet to be challenged outside of St. Joseph (see above) and Elkhart Memorial (Ind.), which Lakeshore beat by a point Jan. 2.

Class C

Flint Hamady (10-0) – The reigning Class C runner-up is cruising as usual, with only one win by single digits – a 42-35 overtime victory over Burton Bendle on Jan. 8; but second-place and one-loss New Lothrop is up next.

Gobles  (11-0) – The Tigers have won 51 straight regular-season games and moved to 80-5 overall during 1,000-point scorer Ellen Doyle’s career. Gobles has won six straight by 20 or more points. 

Kalamazoo Hackett (10-0) – The Fighting Irish’s perfect first half has been driven by defense; Hackett hasn’t given up more than 35 points in a game and has held eight opponents to 29 or fewer.

Laingsburg (10-1) – A semifinalist last season who lost to eventual champion Calumet the game before Hamady did the same, Laingsburg hasn’t slowed in handing Bath its only loss and Class B Durand one of its two defeats.

Class D

Bellevue (9-1) – The Broncos will wait one more week for a rematch with Climax-Scotts, the only team to beat them this season, but are in line to improve significantly on last season’s 13-9 finish.

Big Rapids Crossroads Academy (11-1) – The reigning league champion Cougars have opened up a two-win lead in the West Michigan D with their only loss to expected Class D contender Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart. 

Pittsford (11-0) – Last season’s Class D runner-up held both of last week’s opponents to single-digit scoring – making that four teams this winter held to fewer than 10 points as the Wildcats have continued a 57-game regular-season winning streak. 

Posen (10-0) – The Vikings have been challenged rarely, with only Hillman (twice) playing to within single digits – but Posen will get a sure challenge this week from Class C Tawas (8-2).

PHOTO: Class A contender Saginaw Heritage remained undefeated with a key win last week over rival Midland Dow. (Click for more from

Few in Number, Tecumseh Pursuing Sizable Success with Zajacs Setting Pace

By Doug Donnelly
Special for

December 5, 2023

TECUMSEH – First, the good news: Nearly everyone on the Tecumseh girls basketball team has aspirations to play college basketball – and several of them at a very high level. 

Southeast & BorderNow, the twist: There are only eight girls in the entire program. 

Tecumseh head coach Kristy Zajac, starting her seventh season, is unfazed by the lack of numbers. Tecumseh will field just a varsity team this season but should contend for a Southeastern Conference White championship and pursue a deep playoff run as well. 

“This is a great group of girls,” Zajac said. “At least six or seven of them want to play college basketball. The basketball IQ is so much higher than we have had in the past. We’ve never had a full team of basketball-first kids.” 

Zajac said that dynamic has changed practices and the approach on the court. 

“We do a lot more high-level skill stuff and high-level thinking,” she said. “We do more read-and-react stuff where they have to play on the fly, which makes us harder to scout. We want to try and give the kids a chance to use that basketball IQ and make opportunities for themselves on the floor so they can score without having to run a set play.” 

The list of college prospects starts with her daughter, 6-foot-2 junior Alli Zajac. She holds about 15 Division I offers, and the list seems to grow daily.  

She’s been receiving recruiting attention since before she played a game in high school. As a freshman, she was the Lenawee County Player of the Year and has been all-state both of her first two seasons. Last winter, she scored 433 points as Tecumseh went 20-5.  

Her sister, Addi Zajac, hasn’t played a varsity game yet but has received a lot of attention as well as a college prospect after several great years of travel ball. She’s 6-foot and a true center. 

“She wears a size 14 shoe,” Zajac said. “We are hoping next year she is 6-3 or 6-4. She has such a strong body; I don’t know if I’ve ever seen anyone that strong at her age. She can push people around.” 

The sisters are very different types of players. They also are extremely competitive, as witnessed when they play 1-on-1 at home. 

“It usually ends in a fistfight,” Zajac said. “They are both very competitive.” 

Kristy Zajac coaches her team, which finished 20-5 in 2022-23. The team is loaded with more talent than just the Zajac sisters. 

Sophomore Makayla Schlorf made 28 3-pointers last season, and sophomore Chloe Bollinger made 26. Junior Ashlyn Moorhead averaged just under double figures in scoring and averaged 3.7 assists a game last year. Junior Lauren Kilbarger also is back from last season and joined by newcomers Faith Wiedyk, a junior, sophomore Sophia Torres and freshman Amaria Brown.  

Maddie VanBlack is another travel ball veteran but is out this season due to tearing an ACL. 

Tecumseh athletic director Jon Zajac – Kristy’s husband – said it is disappointing Tecumseh won’t field a junior varsity team this year. He said kids playing travel ball in other sports, along with the youth of the current team, are factors. 

“It is frustrating,” he said. “Hopefully this is the only year for that.” 

Kristy (Maska) Zajac grew up near Tecumseh in Britton, played four years on the varsity and scored more than 1,800 career points under coach Bart Bartels, now an assistant on her staff. She played at Eastern Michigan University, where she was one of the top scorers in school history. Jon Zajac, played at EMU and professionally overseas.  

The entire family is crazy about basketball. In addition to Alli and Addi, son Ryder played four years at Tecumseh before heading off to college to play football, and the youngest in the family, Avery, is a budding star in her own right. 

“There were a few travel games this year where my team was short on numbers and Avery got to play with Addi and Alli,” Kristy Zajac said. “That was cool to see. She held her own. She won’t get to play with Alli in high school (Avery is in seventh grade), but she’ll get two years with Addi. I got to play with my sister, and I wouldn’t trade that time for anything.” 

Jon Zajac stops by practice now and then to coach as well. He and Kristy coach Avery’s travel team. 

“He is a great person to have as part of the program,” Kristy Zajac said of her husband. “Anytime I can get him to help with the post players and with the girls is great. He’s a huge help.” 

The family often schedules trips around basketball and is seemingly always pulled in multiple directions as the three girls compete at various levels. 

“It’s pretty much basketball all day, every day,” Zajac said. “It’s fun to see how the kids enjoy it and love the game.” 

Tecumseh, which has won a combined 39 games over the past two seasons, has loaded up its schedule, playing a collection of nonconference teams that made deep tournament runs and won conference championships last season. Tecumseh plays in the Icebreaker event at Ypsilanti Arbor Prep against Detroit Country Day on Saturday and also faces Temperance-Bedford (23-1 last season), reigning Division 3 runner-up Blissfield and Grand Blanc.  

Without a senior on the team and no JV squad, Tecumseh will play essentially this group for the next 50 or more games. It’s a two-year window with virtually the same team. 

“We’re doing what we can to win this year,” Zajac said. “We want this year to be super successful. We are just taking it one game at a time and going from there. We want to keep building and getting better every day, every game. Hopefully by the end of next year, we’ll be where we need to be.”

Doug DonnellyDoug Donnelly has served as a sports and news reporter and city editor over 25 years, writing for the Daily Chief-Union in Upper Sandusky, Ohio from 1992-1995, the Monroe Evening News from 1995-2012 and the Adrian Daily Telegram since 2013. He's also written a book on high school basketball in Monroe County and compiles record books for various schools in southeast Michigan. E-mail him at [email protected] with story ideas for Jackson, Washtenaw, Hillsdale, Lenawee and Monroe counties.

PHOTOS (Top) Tecumseh’s Alli Zajac makes her move toward the lane last season against Adrian. (Middle) Kristy Zajac coaches her team, which finished 20-5 in 2022-23. (Photos by Deloris Clark-Osborne/Adrian Daily Telegram.)