Martinez Back on Point for John Glenn

December 14, 2015

By Bill Khan
Special for Second Half

BANGOR TOWNSHIP — Laying on the basketball court in pain, Kalle Martinez didn't need a medical opinion to know she was in trouble.

"I knew that the pain I felt I'd never felt before, so I knew something was definitely wrong," she said.

The diagnosis: A torn anterior cruciate ligament in her knee.

What followed was one of the toughest periods in Martinez's young life — life without basketball.

The injury happened during a team camp at Central Michigan University during the summer of 2014, putting her sophomore season at Bay City John Glenn in jeopardy.

While going through rehab was physically and emotionally challenging, she approached the grind of getting healthy with the same work ethic that made Martinez a star as a freshman on a strong varsity team.

"It just gave me motivation when I found out what happened to get better and keep playing like I know how," said Martinez, who said she first picked up a basketball at age 4.

As a result, she was back on the court by mid-January, well ahead of schedule for someone with a torn ACL. She played in 13 out of the Bobcats' 19 games, averaging 10 points a game after putting up 18.8 per game as a freshman.

"Basketball is her life," John Glenn coach Cory Snider said. "When a huge portion of your life gets taken away from you, it's pretty tough. I tell you what, the same way she plays basketball, she attacked her rehab. She came back in 7½, 8 months from an ACL, which is normally a full year's recovery time. She wasn't herself, obviously, for those first couple months, but we kept saying 60 percent of Kalle is better than no Kalle."

"I was not 100 percent at all, but I wanted to play with my friends," the 5-foot-6 point guard said. "I knew I wasn't able to do what I used to do, so I worked with what I had and built from there."

Unable to physically work on her game during her rehab, Martinez tried to improve herself in other ways.

"I watched a lot of film," said Martinez, who received all-state honorable mention as a freshman. "I really just paid attention to detail and how to correct myself."

"She's back to where she was athletically her freshman year," Snider said. "She looks the same. However, she's become a much more intelligent basketball player, which is a huge difference. She sees the floor so much better. That was part of the process of going through that injury last year. She was forced to learn how to play the game instead of just beating everybody."

Martinez was healthy enough by summer to impress the staff at Central Michigan, which offered her a scholarship before the start of her junior year. Martinez accepted, removing the pressure of the recruiting process for her final two years of high school.

"It's a good feeling," she said. "I feel I made the right decision going there. I feel I'm going to fit in really well. It's kind of a relief to know I don't have to go to this camp to get noticed. I feel at home at CMU."

She also feels more like her old self at John Glenn, leading the Bobcats to a 5-0 start that included a 53-44 victory over a Southfield-Lathrup team ranked No. 1 regardless of class in several preseason polls. Martinez had 18 points in that game, hitting five 3-pointers.

"I feel good," Martinez said. "I feel 100 percent now. I'm blessed, because not everyone can say they came back completely."

Martinez doesn't need to fill up the net every night, because she runs an offense that includes Grand Valley State University recruits Jenai LaPorte and Cassidy Boensch.

LaPorte is a three-time honorable mention all-state pick who is John Glenn's all-time leading scorer with 1,223 career points. She averages 14.2 points per game this season, and Martinez adds 12.6. The 6-foot-3 Boensch averages 15.8 points and 8.3 rebounds. Jamie Brisson averages 8.3 points.

"This is the best team we've had by far," LaPorte said. "Just the way we've been playing together for some people four years, for some three years. We have a lot of experience. We know what everyone likes to do."

It's an experienced lineup that has its sights set on winning John Glenn's first District championship since 1991 — and more.

The Bobcats have been a District championship-caliber team in recent years, but were eliminated by Midland Bullock Creek the past three seasons. Bullock Creek reached the MHSAA Class B Semifinals in 2013 and 2014 and was ranked No. 1 last year when it won a 40-39 overtime thriller against John Glenn in the District Semifinals. The Bobcats reached the District Final four straight years before losing in the semis last season.

In order to be better prepared for the postseason, John Glenn loaded up its nonconference schedule. The first five games included Class A contenders Southfield-Lathrup and Detroit Renaissance, 26-time District champion Frankenmuth and Class A Midland. The Bobcats face five-time MHSAA champion Saginaw Nouvel on Wednesday.

"Coming into the year, our mindset was we'd rather go 15-5 and make a deep run in the playoffs than go 20-0 and possibly not be ready for tournament time," Snider said. "We want to make sure we're battle-tested and ready to go once that tournament rolls around. This first two weeks for us has been killer."

Bill Khan served as a sportswriter at The Flint Journal from 1981-2011 and currently contributes to the State Champs! Sports Network. He can be reached at [email protected] with story ideas for Genesee, Lapeer, St. Clair, Sanilac, Huron, Tuscola, Saginaw, Bay, Arenac, Midland and Gladwin counties.

PHOTO: Kalle Martinez sets up Bay City John Glenn's offense during last season's game against Saginaw Nouvel. (Click for more from

Jahfetson Makes History from 3-Point Range in Taking Baraga to 2023 Finals

By Geoff Kimmerly senior editor

April 23, 2024

Baraga’s Corina Jahfetson graduated in 2023 as one of the most accomplished 3-point shooters in MHSAA history and coming off one of the most impressive single seasons from beyond the arc.

Her 103 3-pointers as a senior over 29 games were the second-most for one season and included eight in a Quarterfinal win over Mackinaw City – the second-most in an MHSAA Quarterfinal, Semifinal or Final.

She finished with 236 3-pointers over 96 games and four seasons, ranking 12th on that career list, and Baraga finished the season as Division 4 runner-up. She’s continuing her career at Northern Michigan.

See below for more recent additions to the MHSAA girls basketball record book, and click the heading to view the record book in full.

Girls Basketball

Alma junior Bailey Walkington earned her school’s first single-season individual record book entry for girls basketball in 2022-23. She made the steals list with 143 over 23 games.

Dalton DeBoer became the latest Midland Dow long-range shooting ace to make the records after she drained 70 of 206 3-point attempts over 24 games in 2022-23. DeBoer is a junior this school year.

Durand senior Jordyn Lawrence earned her school’s first girls basketball individual record book entry with 15 steals in her team’s 44-31 win over Flint Kearsley on Dec. 2, 2022. She’s continuing at Mid-Michigan College.

Leah French finished her Engadine career in 2023 with a series of game, season and career record book entries detailing her scoring and defensive skills. She earned single-game listings for 54 points and 19 free throws against St. Ignace on Feb. 6, 2023, and nine 3-pointers against Manistique that Jan. 9. She made the single-season list with 81 3-pointers, 177 free throws and 168 steals over 25 games as a senior. And she made the career lists with 171 3-pointers, 354 free throws and 405 steals over 85 games and four seasons. She’s continuing her career at Aquinas College.

Arieonna Ware earned Battle Creek Central's first girls basketball record book entry with 51 points in a Feb. 11, 2020, win over Portage Northern. She actually finished with a triple-double, adding 12 rebounds and 12 steals. Ware also was added for 47 points in a March 6, 2019, District game against Sturgis.

Mesick senior Kayla McCoy made the MHSAA record in 2022-23 as a junior, totaling 144 steals over 23 games. It was Mesick’s first individual entry in the girls basketball record book.

Coldwater’s Carlee Crabtree made a career-high 52 3-pointers during her senior season of 2019-20 on the way to making the MHSAA career list for long-distance shots with 163, in 469 attempts, over four seasons and 88 games total. She went on to play at Central Michigan and Hope College.

Battle Creek Pennfield’s Kaylee Glidden capped her three-year varsity career in 2023 among the most accurate free-throw shooters in MHSAA history – and also among top 3-point aces. She made 90.6 percent of her free-throw attempts as a senior, good for fifth-highest percentage all-time for one season, and her 84.4-percent success rate ranks fourth on the career list. She also made the single-season 3-pointers list with 67 that winter and the career list with 168. She continued at Kellogg Community College and has committed to Great Lakes Christian College.

Larissa Huffman made a pair of career lists upon completing her four-year varsity career in 2023 at Mackinaw City. She was added for 468 assists and 411 steals, both over 92 games, and she’s continuing her career at St. Norbert (Wis.). Additionally, Mackinaw City was added to the single-game field goals list as a team for making at least 39 in a game six times over the 2021-22 and 2022-23 seasons, with a high of 45.

Lansing Christian earned a listing on the team 3-pointers list when it sank 14 on 32 attempts against Webberville on Jan. 20, 2023. Seven players drained at least one of the long-distance shots.  

Grayling’s 66-49 win over Houghton Lake on Dec. 19 included one of the most impressive defensive performances of all-time as senior Makayla Watkins had 19 steals – tying for third-most in one game.

Brooklyn Columbia Central’s Zoandria Bamm grabbed 28 rebounds during a Feb. 14, 2023, game against Clinton to make the single-game list in that category and on the way to finishing her senior season with 380 rebounds over 25 games – tying for 13th most on that list. She’s playing at Jackson College.

Riley Abney became the first player to be listed for points scored in a quarter of a girls basketball game when she sank 21 of her 36 total during the fourth quarter of a 64-47 loss to Linden on Jan. 16. The Ortonville Brandon senior has committed to be a preferred walk-on at Oakland.

A pair of Paw Paw standouts earned single-game accomplishments within three days of each other in January. On Jan. 26 against Sturgis, junior AJ Rickli grabbed 31 rebounds, tied for seventh-most for one game. On Jan. 29 against Three Rivers, sophomore Stella Shaefer made the single-game assists list with 14.

Keira Maki joined the single-game points list on Feb. 22 when she scored 47 in Escanaba’s 64-49 win over Sault Ste. Marie. The senior will continue at Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

PHOTO Baraga’s Corina Jahfetson (22) brings the ball upcourt during the 2023 Division 4 Final against Glen Lake at Breslin Center.