Breslin Bound: Girls Report Week 9

February 3, 2015

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

It’s rematch time for MHSAA girls basketball teams.

Fewer than four weeks remain until the start of District play March 2. From this point on, most teams will be seeing league opponents for the second time – and often with much on the line.

See below for teams that impressed last week, many doing so in rematches or with key ones coming up.


Midland Dow (10-2) – The Chargers took a half-game lead in the Saginaw Valley Association North by beating previous leader Saginaw Heritage 45-39 on Friday. Dow had fallen to Heritage 49-39 on Dec. 16 and now can keep an eye out for third-place Midland, which it will host Feb. 13.

Muskegon Reeths-Puffer (11-3) – Friday’s loss to Grand Rapids Union aside, this has been a nice run for the Ottawa-Kent Conference Black co-leader. The Rockets finished third last season but led the league this winter until falling to third-place Union by a point, 46-45. Reeths-Puffer takes on co-leader Mona Shores on Friday.

Southfield-Lathrup (11-1) – These Chargers are undefeated in Michigan with their only loss coming by a bucket to Toledo Rogers on Dec. 13. Southfield-Lathrup has beaten a solid group of opponents including last week Oakland Activities Association Red second-place Rochester Hills Stoney Creek, which is 10-3. The Chargers get another second-place OAA Red team this Thursday in 11-3 North Farmington.

Wyoming (11-2) – The Wolves sit atop the O-K Bronze standings at 5-0 through the first half of the league schedule. They haven’t lost a league game since Jan. 8, 2013, but face second-place Grand Rapids Northview on Friday in their second matchup of this season.


Croswell-Lexington (11-2) – The Pioneers have won eight straight since falling to Port Huron Northern in the semifinals of the Marysville Invitational and are tied with Armada for first place in the Blue Water Area Conference. The only league loss came to Capac, and Croswell-Lexington avenged it with a 33-29 overtime win last week.

Houghton (12-2) – It’s shaping up as another special season for the Gremlins, who split last season’s West Peninsula Athletic Conference title but lead second-place Calumet after beating the Copper Kings by three on Jan. 20. Houghton beat last season’s co-champion, L’Anse, 64-31 on Monday after edging 10-win Kingsford in overtime Friday.

Kalkaska (11-1) – The Blazers' only slip-up this winter came Jan. 9 to Traverse City St. Francis, the only team ahead of Kalkaska in the Lake Michigan Conference standings. It’s a nice jump from last season’s 12-win finish – and with the rematch against St. Francis still to play.

Midland Bullock Creek (14-0) – The Central-leading Lancers dominated a tough Tri-Valley Conference crossover week, beating East leader Frankenmuth 57-40 (both of Frankenmuth’s losses are to Bullock Creek) and then handing West leader Ithaca its first loss this season, 63-52.


Laingsburg (13-0) – The Wolfpack edged 10-win Class B Perry 31-28 last week to remain perfect and lead Pewamo-Westphalia by half a win in the Central Michigan Athletic Conference thanks to a 36-33 win over the Pirates in mid-December. Those two meet again Thursday.

Leroy Pine River (8-1) – The Bucks have won seven straight and lead the Highland Conference after finishing second to McBain a year ago. McBain is in second to start this week and hosts Pine River on Thursday.

Ishpeming (11-2) – The Hematites took a tough loss Monday, 34-32 to Iron Mountain. But they remain in first place in the Mid-Peninsula Athletic Conference with their only other loss to nonleague Gladstone during the season’s second week. Ishpeming had beaten Iron Mountain by 15 in their first meeting.

Niles Brandywine (12-1) – Last week we highlighted Class A Kalamazoo Central, the only team to beat Brandywine this season (and in double overtime). Brandywine continued to cruise last week, finishing with a 62-59 win over Berrien-Cass-St. Joseph West contender Buchanan – Brandywine has dealt the Bucks both of their losses this winter.


Baraga (8-4) – The Vikings have bounced back nicely off last season’s six-win finish. They are tied for first place in the Copper Country Conference despite a tough stretch of three straight losses, including two to league foes, in mid-January.

Gaylord St. Mary (12-3) – The reigning champion in the Ski Valley Conference is chasing from third but has won seven straight and with the teams it trails next up on the schedule – first-place Johannesburg-Lewiston tonight and second-place Bellaire next week.     

St. Ignace (10-5) – The Saints are holding on to slim lead in the Straits Area Conference thanks in part to senior Margo Brown, an MHSAA Scholar-Athlete Award winner this week who has a season high of 41 points and recently set the school record with 11 3-pointers in a game.

St. Joseph Lake Michigan Catholic (9-3) – The Lakers are one of few teams in Michigan that play in multiple conferences; they’re in third place behind Class C Brandywine and Class B Buchanan in the BCS West, but are undefeated atop the Red Arrow Conference.

PHOTO: Detroit Pershing opened this season's Public School League Tournament with a victory over Detroit Communication Media Arts last week. (Photo courtesy of the Detroit Public School League.) 

West Iron Track Champ Shamion Also Finishing 1,000-Point Hoops Career

By John Vrancic
Special for

February 21, 2024

STAMBAUGH — Danica Shamion has enjoyed plenty of success in track & field throughout her high school athletic career.

Upper PeninsulaThe West Iron County senior is also quite successful in basketball.

Shamion joined the 1,000-point club here Jan. 23 while scoring 34 in a 63-60 loss to Norway.

“That really felt good,” she said after last week’s 93-41 win over Bessemer on Senior Night. “I’m glad I was able to do that at home. Although, it would have been even better had we won that game.”

The Wykons scored five in double digits against the Speedgirls, led by senior Siena Stine with 20 points. Junior center Sidney Storti added 17 points, and Shamion finished with 16 points and 17 assists.

“Sidney is a real asset to our team,” Shamion said. “I can see the floor pretty well, and the other girls are doing a pretty good job getting open. This was our last home game. It definitely meant something to us.”

Shamion, an All-Upper Peninsula Division 1-3 first-team selection a year ago, twisted her ankle in a season-opening 47-40 triumph over Iron Mountain and missed the next three games.

West Iron was 1-3 going into the holiday break before getting back on track with a 42-28 victory over Kingsford on Jan. 2. That enabled the Wykons to improve to 4-3 before dropping six of their next seven games.

Shamion maintains possession of the ball.West Iron, which was 5-9 after dropping a 73-55 decision at Negaunee, had won four in a row prior to Thursday’s 46-44 loss at Calumet. But the Wykons bounced back with a 51-49 win over Ishpeming Westwood on Tuesday to get back to .500 at 10-10.

“We were trying to forge our identity and weren’t hitting our shots (earlier in the season),” Shamion said. “Although, we’ve been playing better defense lately. We’re pretty good one-on-one and usually play man-to-man. We try to run the floor and score in transition.

“Negaunee is probably the best team we’ve seen this year, although Ishpeming and Houghton are also very good and Calumet and Westwood are tough,” she added.

In track & field, Shamion set U.P. Division 2 Finals record in the 200-meter dash (26.34 seconds) and 400 (57.18) last season. She also won the 100 (12.79) and placed second in high jump at 4 feet, 10 inches. She is a three-time Finals champion in all three sprint races.

Shamion also made the all-U.P. Volleyball Dream Team in the fall.

She will continue on the track at Central Michigan University after she graduates from West Iron this spring.

“I didn’t know much about their program, but I was interested in what they had to offer,” she said. “The girls on the team are nice, which is part of the reason why I chose Central. It’s a relief to have that decided.”

John VrancicJohn Vrancic has covered high school sports in the Upper Peninsula since joining the Escanaba Daily Press staff in 1985. He is known most prominently across the peninsula for his extensive coverage of cross country and track & field that frequently appears in newspapers from the Wisconsin border to Lake Huron. He received the James Trethewey Award for Distinguished Service in 2015 from the Upper Peninsula Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association.

PHOTOS (Top) West Iron’s Danica Shamion (24) blocks a shot during her team’s game at Ishpeming on Jan. 15. (Middle) Shamion maintains possession of the ball. (Photos by Cara Kamps.)