Breslin Bound: Girls Report Week 9
January 29, 2013
By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
Only a month's worth of games remain before the start of MHSAA girls basketball District tournaments. And the teams that made this week's list of high performers surely have hit their strides.
A few have been on point since opening night. Most of the rest this week have suffered only close losses to top competition or have avenged one of their early-season defeats.
Results and overall records below are drawn from our MHSAA Score Center. Are either incorrect? Please help us make the necessary fixes after filling in this brief registration.
1. Reese (13-0) – The Rockets are weeks away from finishing their second-straight perfect regular season, and highly-touted Saginaw Nouvel, by 10 points, was only opponent to come that close.
2. Lansing Christian (13-0) – This might be the best Pilgrims team since it won back-to-back Class D titles in 2003-04; Lansing Christian has played a number of larger schools, and only four total have come within 10 points.
3. Farmington Hills Harrison (13-1) – The Hawks have won 12 straight since falling to Oxford by three on the last day of November; Harrison avenged that with a 48-27 win over Oxford last week.
4. Kent City (12-1) – This level of success is the norm for Kent City, and it's perfect since falling by two to Class A Muskegon in the Eagles’ opener.
5. Petoskey (11-2) – The Northmen have won eight straight since their last loss, to Cadillac, on Dec. 14; they avenged that loss with a 41-40 win over Cadillac on Friday.
6. Haslett (10-2) – Only DeWitt and Saginaw Nouvel, by a combined nine points, have slowed the Vikings this season; Haslett has won six of its last seven.
7. Portland St. Patrick (12-1) – The Shamrocks, Class D Semifinalists last season, have won nine straight with their only loss to Class C Pewamo-Westphalia on Dec. 11.
8. St. Clair Shores South Lake (7-4) – South Lake has won seven straight since opening 0-4; the Cavaliers’ most recent win also was Center Line’s first loss, 45-40.
9. Carson City-Crystal (10-2) – It’s tough to remember the Eagles won only two games two seasons ago; they've lost only two this winter, and already avenged one defeat, to Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart.
10. Dearborn Divine Child (8-2) – Divine Child’s 2-2 start included close losses to Nouvel and equally-talented Westland John Glenn. The Falcons have won the close ones too, with four wins by six or fewer points.
PHOTO: Farmington Hills Harrison (yellow and green uniforms) has won 12 straight games, including this one over Detroit Consortium earlier this season. (Click to see more at HighSchoolSportsScene.com.)
Lansing Catholic Closes Season With Memorable Victory Close to Home
By Paul Costanzo
Special for MHSAA.com
March 18, 2023
EAST LANSING – The Lansing Catholic girls basketball team took a short drive to end a long wait.
Playing just three miles from their high school, the Cougars defeated Frankenmuth 43-29 Saturday at the Breslin Center to win the MHSAA Division 2 Final. It was the first Finals title for the program since 1995.
“It felt like homecourt advantage a little bit,” Lansing Catholic senior guard Hannah Pricco said. “Our bus trip wasn’t super long. It just kind of felt like we were coming to our own court.”
The Cougars treated it that way, dominating from the beginning of the matchup in their first Finals trip since that 1995 title. They scored the game’s first 11 points and never looked back.
“This is, as you can imagine, extremely surreal,” Lansing Catholic coach Kacee Reid said. “You’re going through literally every emotion on the bench, especially in a game like that. Frankenmuth is making such a great comeback, and we knew they were going to fight to the end. To go through the anger and sadness and happiness, and now it’s over and we’ve won it. It’s just been a rollercoaster of emotions, and I can’t describe the pride I have in these girls.”
It was the second meeting between the two teams, with Lansing Catholic taking the first 74-42 on Feb. 2. But Reid wasn’t going to let her team come in overconfident.
“They didn’t get here by accident,” Reid said. “They’re in the state championship because they’re playing their best ball of the year. We played them a month and a half ago. … We’re a totally different team, and we knew they were a totally different team. We knew they had been playing some really good basketball, and it didn’t matter at all what that first outcome was. We knew this was going to be a battle.”
Lansing Catholic (24-5) never trailed, and led by as many as 17 points in the third quarter. Leah Richards led the Cougars with 16 points and nine rebounds, while Anna Richards had 14 points. Gabby Halliwill added seven.
The Cougars were spurred by their defense throughout, holding Frankenmuth to 9 of 36 shooting from the field and forcing 13 turnovers.
“For us, defensively, we had to switch it up,” Reid said. “We had to keep switching up between man and zone. They were making adjustments and we couldn’t really sit in one thing for too long; they got comfortable. That’s a credit to their coaching staff always making adjustments. We had to continue to switch things up defensively and try to hopefully make their shooters second-guess their shot, or maybe not know where we were coming from.”
Frankenmuth (25-3) didn’t go away, despite trailing by double digits for the majority of the game.
That was helped by Lansing Catholic shooting 1 of 11 from the field in the third quarter, and going scoreless for the final 5:26 of the frame.
The Eagles cut the lead to seven with 2:45 to play on a steal and layup from Clare Conzelmann, but never got closer.
“There was always belief no matter what detriment we got ourselves in,” Frankenmuth senior Lexi Boyke said. “I wouldn’t want to choose any other girls to play with and be in with at that point. I think we fought back and really prided ourselves on, ‘We can still do it.’ We didn’t stop fighting until the end.”
Lansing Catholic always figured Frankenmuth would make a run to get into the game, but was ready when it came.
“We knew they were going to make runs, we knew we weren’t going to hold them to seven points the whole game,” Anna Richards said. “We knew in the third quarter they were going to score, so we just had to stay composed, work the ball around on offense to get the good shots that we wanted.”
Boyke, who scored Frankenmuth’s first 10 points and was its only scorer well into the third quarter, finished with 16. She also reached 1,000 career points in the game, and had six rebounds, while Izzy Bernthal had seven.
Frankenmuth was making its first Finals appearance since winning the Class C title in 1996, one year after Lansing Catholic.
“That’s a really good Lansing Catholic team, and you’ve seen that from their postseason run and beating an undefeated West Catholic team, and tonight finishing their season off with a state championship. So, congratulations to them,” Frankenmuth coach Joe Jacobs said. “I’m super proud of our kids. They didn’t quit tonight. They could have. … Fun experience, one that we want to treasure forever, but the motivation to come back again is here after tonight’s loss.”
PHOTOS (Top) Lansing Catholic celebrates its Division 2 championship Saturday night at Breslin Center. (Middle) The Cougars’ Anna Richards (10) attempts to get a shot up over Frankenmuth’s Lexi Boyke. (Below) Tessa Roe (12) works to get past Clare Conzelmann and to the basket.