Breslin Bound: Girls Report Week 9

February 3, 2020

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

We’re closing in quickly on that time of year when months of work will play out in girls basketball league championships and this winter – for the first time – seeding of the top two teams at the District level.

Much could be determined in league races this week – check out our “Can’t-Miss Contests” below, which include a sixth game because five just wasn’t enough to note all of the high-profile conference clashes that deserve mention.

We’re also less than two weeks from undertaking the seeding process in basketball for the first time – and need your help. The teams receiving those top-two spots in District brackets – for girls and boys – will do so based on success and strength of schedule, and it’s imperative for to list all games played and correct scores for each. Know a score we don’t or realize a game is missing that should be added? Send corrections or missing scores to [email protected]. Every result affects multiples of others, and we thank you for your help in advance. 

“Breslin Bound” is powered by MI Student Aid and based on those results and schedules posted for each school at

Week in Review

The countdown of last week’s five most intriguing results: 

1. Detroit Cass Tech 68, Detroit Martin Luther King 43 – The Technicians clinched the Detroit Public School League East title outright by handing rival King its first loss.

2. Bloomfield Hills Marian 36, Farmington Hills Mercy 29 – The Mustangs moved into a first-place tie in the Detroit Catholic League Central by handing rival Mercy its first loss and after falling to the Marlins 46-34 on Jan. 7.

3. Midland Dow 52, Midland 33 – The Chargers avenged a 38-31 loss from Dec. 19 in a big way, handing the rival Chemics their first defeat.

4. Southfield Arts & Technology 59, Flint Carman-Ainsworth 47 – The Warriors’ tough schedule is paying off as they’ve won five of their last six games and handed Carman-Ainsworth its first loss.

5. Detroit Edison 54, Detroit Renaissance 52 – Edison moved to 12-0, but the Phoenix gave the Pioneers their closest in-state game in nearly two calendar years.

Watch List

With an eye toward March, here are two teams in each division making sparks:


Battle Creek Lakeview (9-4) After winning 12 games both of the last two seasons, the Spartans are on pace to surpass that total by the end of the regular season. They also enjoy a slight lead in the Southwestern Michigan Athletic Conference East after avenging their opening-night loss to Battle Creek Central (10-3) with a 35-33 win Friday. Lakeview’s only two losses since an 0-2 start are to teams with double-digit wins, Portage Central (10-2) and Battle Creek Harper Creek (11-2).

Detroit Cass Tech (12-1) As noted above, Cass Tech is a league champion again after sharing the PSL Midtown title with King last season. LaTonya Tate, a star on Cass Tech’s 1987 Class A championship team, has built the program into a contender again. Its only loss was to Davison on Dec. 29 at the Motor City Roundball Classic, and Cass Tech also picked up a strong 46-40 win over Southfield A&T on Jan. 25


Cadillac (12-0) A 42-40 win a week ago over McBain provided one of the few scares of the season for the Big North Conference-leading Vikings. They’ve run their league winning streak to 16 after closing last winter in the Division 2 Quarterfinals – pretty impressive only a season and a half removed from a 3-18 finish in 2017-18. Cadillac can clinch the league title – at least a share, or outright – Friday against Traverse City West.

Ludington (11-1) Since falling big to Muskegon Reeths-Puffer (12-2) in its season opener, Ludington is unbeaten and nearly unchallenged with only two of those wins by single digits and those two games both against Division 1 schools. The Orioles hold a one-game lead on Muskegon Western Michigan Christian in the Lakes 8 Athletic Conference standings after sharing the title with the Warriors a year ago.


Pewamo-Westphalia (10-2) The reigning Division 3 champion had high expectations for this season and rightly so, bringing back most of its firepower from a year ago. The Pirates have celebrated two seniors scoring their 1,000th career points this winter and an early win over Southfield A&T. The losses were pretty strong too – to Grass Lake (12-1) and Division 1 East Lansing (12-1). P-W could meet Grass Lake again in a Semifinal at Breslin.

Ypsilanti Arbor Prep (12-4) After falling to P-W in overtime in a Division 3 Semifinal last season, the Gators are sticking to a winning gameplan. They’ve played 12 of 16 games against teams with winning records and seven games against teams with double-digit wins. They beat two of those 10-win teams over the last two weeks – Royal Oak Shrine Catholic and Jackson Northwest – and their three in-state losses were to Division 1 Ann Arbor Huron (12-2) and Brighton (11-1) and Division 2 Harper Woods Chandler Park (7-6).  


Camden-Frontier (13-1) Even with just one loss, Camden-Frontier probably was considered just a notch below undefeated Pittsford heading into last week’s matchup – plus Pittsford had beaten C-F at least 17 times in a row (which is as far back as data goes). But the Redskins came away with a 54-34 win and moved into a first-place tie with the Wildcats in the Southern Central Athletic Association East. They meet again Feb. 17.  

Deckerville (10-3) The Eagles entered one of the biggest small-school games in the state last week battling history as well as an unbeaten opponent – and owned the night. Deckerville avenged a 41-28 loss to Kingston from Dec. 16, handing the Cardinals their first loss this season and first league loss since 2013-14. The win also put Deckerville into a first-place tie with Kingston in the North Central Thumb League Stars.

Can't-Miss Contests

Be on the lookout for results of these games coming up: 

Tuesday – Macomb Dakota (13-1) at Grosse Pointe South (10-3) – Dakota leads the Macomb Area Conference Red with two more wins than South, but South handed Dakota its only loss, 49-46, on Jan. 17.

Tuesday – Michigan Center (10-3) at Grass Lake (12-1) – Grass Lake won the first meeting 51-46 on Dec. 18 and can edge closer toward the Cascades Conference title with a regular-season sweep.

Thursday – Brooklyn Columbia Central (12-1) at Ida (12-2) – This could nearly decide the Lenawee County Athletic Association title as BCC looks to hold off Ida for the second straight season and won the first matchup 44-36 on Jan. 7.

Thursday – St. Ignace (10-1) at Sault Ste. Marie (11-1) – The Blue Devils are hoping to take back a share of first place in the Straits Area Conference after losing it to the Saints in a 40-37 nail-biter Dec. 20.

Friday – DeWitt (11-2) at East Lansing (12-1) – The Trojans lead the Capital Area Activities Conference Blue by a game over DeWitt thanks to a 62-38 win over the Panthers on Dec. 20.

Friday – Fremont (9-4) at Big Rapids (12-1) – Fremont’s 39-33 win in the first meeting Dec. 20 was Big Rapids’ only loss, and remains the reason Big Rapids trails only Fremont in the Central State Activities Association Gold.

Second Half’s weekly “Breslin Bound” reports are powered by MI Student Aid, a part of the Office of Postsecondary Financial Planning located within the Michigan Department of Treasury. MI Student Aid encourages students to pursue postsecondary education by providing access to student financial resources and information. MI Student Aid administers the state’s 529 college savings programs (MET/MESP), as well as scholarship and grant programs that help make college Accessible, Affordable and Attainable for you. Connect with MI Student Aid at and find more information on Facebook and Twitter @mistudentaid.

PHOTO: Deckerville handed Kingston its first loss of the season last week, and first league loss since 2013-14. (Photo by Jackie Salowitz.)

JoBurg 3-Sport Great Capping Career Filled with All-State Honors, Team Trophies

By Tom Spencer
Special for

April 5, 2024

It won’t be hard for Jayden Marlatt to remember opening day on the softball field from any of her four years at Johannesburg-Lewiston.

Northern Lower PeninsulaAs a freshman, she missed the opener due to needing to quarantine. Her sophomore and junior years started on the road because the Cardinals’ field was under construction.  

This season the Cardinals will open up — weather permitting — on their brand-new field, hosting Mio on Monday, April 8.  Marlatt is slated to be the starting pitcher again and add to her school record collection.

While Johannesburg-Lewiston is looking forward to playing on the new diamond, Marlatt and her teammates have high hopes of finishing the season almost 200 miles south. They’re looking to get back to Michigan State University – the site of the Division 4 Semifinals and Final.

The Cards have had their sites on that goal since they fell 4-2 to Mendon in last year’s Semifinal at Secchia Stadium. The loss ended a 30-4-1 campaign that saw the Cardinals play every game on the road for a second consecutive year, but come up only one victory short of a first championship game appearance.

The trip to East Lansing also came after the Cards won the program’s first District title since 2008 and advanced to the Semifinals for the first time since 1981.

“It has been a long two seasons on the road,” said eighth-year head coach Kim Marlatt, noting the team utilized a Little League field for practices during the stretch. “They’ve been putting in a lot of work in the offseason, so it is excited to get going.”

Cardinals’ 1,000-point scorer Marlatt sets up for a free throw attempt. The new field isn’t the only new things this spring. The Cardinals will have a junior varsity team for the first time during the Marlatt’s tenure. The JV squad is coached by Ryan Marlatt, who has been serving the program the past eight years as assistant coach. He also has been the head girls basketball coach at JoBurg the past two seasons.

The Marlatt coaches are the proud parents of Jayden, who continues to garner recognition as perhaps the greatest athlete in Johannesburg-Lewiston’s history. 

The three-sport star had a huge hand in all that JoBurg accomplished last season leading the team in batting average (.670), home runs (13) and runs batted in (61). As the team’s ace pitcher, she collected 249 strikeouts and compiled a 1.32 ERA.

“Jayden has put in the hard work,” Kim pointed out.  “She is a very humble athlete. ‘She doesn’t like to talk about herself. She likes to compete, and she likes to be on the top of her game for her teammates.”

Jayden has been named all-conference and all-state in softball, basketball and volleyball nearly every season over her four years at JoBurg. She’s led her teams to Ski Valley Conference, District and Regional titles along the way.

She’s also been named Player of the Year by multiple publications. And she’s a front runner to be voted the Most Valuable Player of the Ski Valley Conference in softball. Earlier this year, league coaches voted her the MVP for both basketball and volleyball.  

“The Ski Valley never used to vote on an MVP,” Ryan Marlatt said. “Hopefully she can add the triple crown and get softball this year.”

Jayden Marlatt, who has played all three sports all four years, acknowledged softball is perhaps her most treasured, and she’ll continue in that sport at Ferris State. Her career total of more than 500 strikeouts, and her 14 home runs last season, are both JoBurg school records. "I like them all but probably softball,” she confirmed when asked to name her favorite sport.

She averaged 12 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3.3 assists and four steals per game this winter helping the Cards basketball team to a conference runner-up finish. She was key to JoBurg's ability to put a 12-game winning streak together, and she topped the 1,000-point career mark along the way.

Also a standout in the fall, Marlatt prepares to connect during volleyball season.Her outstanding senior year on the basketball court and this spring’s possibilities nearly vanished as the volleyball season ended.

She suffered what looked to be a serious lower-leg injury in the final game of the JoBurg volleyball season. “She finished in the emergency room,” Kim Marlatt said.  

Diagnosed a high ankle sprain, it was an aggravation to an injury from her junior year in basketball. She wasn’t quite at 100 percent on the basketball court this season until the holiday break. She’s starting the softball season healthy, though.

Before the injury, Jayden led the Cards to their third volleyball conference championship over the last four years. After becoming JoBurg's all-time kills leader during her junior season, and with many of her teammates from her first three seasons graduating, Jayden had to fill a variety of roles while anchoring the offense from her outside hitter spot.

She ended up leading the team in both kills with 421 and digs, with 431, in her final season on the volleyball court. And she is listed among MHSAA’s all-time leaders in kills for a single match and career.

It’s more than Marlatt’s stats that stand out for Kristine Peppin, the school’s volleyball coach the past 15 years.

“It is not about the size of the school or the size of the player, it’s the heart that they have inside,” she proclaimed. “This girl would be a successful player on whatever team she was on. 

“Yes we’re a small school, small town,” she continued. “That kind of leadership and heart and drive to be the best is what’s given her that success.”

Marlatt’s work ethic is second to none, Peppin noted. She never saw Jayden give less than a “1,000” percent in practice or games in her career. 

Marlatt celebrates a trophy win during last season’s Semifinals softball run with parents (and coaches) Kim and Ryan Marlatt.“She’s a super hard worker and extremely modest for the kind of skill she possesses and the success she’s had,” Peppin said. “Her teammates think it’s amazing to be on her team.”

Marlatt’s volleyball skills caught the eye of at least one of her conference opponents’ coaches back in junior high. Ron Stremlow was performing one of his many coaching duties for Fife Lake Forest Area when he first saw Jayden on the volleyball court.

“I could tell then this girl was somebody special,” said Stremlow, who became one of the winningest coaches in state volleyball history with the Warriors. “When she got in high school, it just took off.

“She puts the time into it, and she works hard,” Stremlow continued. “Kids like that get what they deserve – they work for it.”

Stremlow, now retired, also acknowledged he’s enjoyed being able to watch the hard-throwing Marlatt on the softball field the last couple of seasons as Forest Area hosted the Cardinals consecutively due to JoBurg’s lack of a home field.

It’s something he’ll have to travel to do this year though, as JoBurg is scheduled to host the Warriors on April 15.

The Cardinals also will host a Regional on their new field June 8. The winners of District play at Rogers City, Harbor Springs, St. Ignace and Gaylord St. Mary will participate.

To play in the Regional, the Cards will have to emerge from the Rogers City District featuring the host Hurons, Atlanta, Hillman, Onaway, and Posen.

Tom SpencerTom Spencer is a longtime MHSAA-registered basketball and soccer official, and former softball and baseball official, and he also has coached in the northern Lower Peninsula area. He previously has written for the Saginaw News, Bay County Sports Page and Midland Daily News. He can be reached at [email protected] with story ideas for Manistee, Wexford, Missaukee, Roscommon, Ogemaw, Iosco, Alcona, Oscoda, Crawford, Kalkaska, Grand Traverse, Benzie, Leelanau, Antrim, Otsego, Montmorency, Alpena, Presque Isle, Cheboygan, Charlevoix and Emmet counties.

PHOTOS (Top) Johannesburg-Lewiston’s Jayden Marlatt drives a pitch during softball season. (2) Cardinals’ 1,000-point scorer Marlatt sets up for a free throw attempt. (3) Also a standout in the fall, Marlatt prepares to connect during volleyball season. (4) Marlatt celebrates a trophy win during last season’s Semifinals softball run with parents (and coaches) Kim and Ryan Marlatt. (Action shots by Dylan Jespersen/Petoskey News-Review; family photo by Breya Domke.)