The start of the game got ugly and ugly quickly. Grosse Pointe South went on a 16-0 run, keeping Ypsilanti from putting any points on the board until the three-minute mark. Ypsilanti became self-sabotaging, rushing shots and accumulating numerous unforced turnovers. The second quarter started out pretty much the same. Midway through, Ypsilanti found a spark and began to play harder and execute better on offense. However, it was not enough to slow down Grosse Point South. At the half, Grosse Pointe possessed a 20 point lead, which included a four-point play from senior guard Sophia Iafrate.
Both teams started the second half off trading baskets and playing with a lot more energy on defense. Junior Alexa Downey and sophomore Kam Richards continued to be the hot hand for GP South, while junior Dani Bryant was an energy spark for Ypsilanti, getting to the hoop and drawing the foul. The combination of GP South’s defense and turnovers caused Ypsilanti to score only six points in the third quarter. Despite inside domination from junior center Cadrice Augustine the entire game, GP South’s early lead was too much for the Lady Grizzlies to overcome.
Scoring Leaders: Ypsilanti – Augustine: 12 pts 13 rebs, Bryant: 10 pts 3 steals, / Grosse Pointe South – Richards: 18 pts 5 steals, Downey: 12 pts 7 rebs 5 steals, Iafrate: 13 pts 4 rebs
Pioneer started the game on a 10-0 run, using their 1-2-2 half-court pressure to create rushed shots and turnovers for the Lady Tigers. Pioneer moved the ball extremely well in transition, which allowed them to score multiple easy layups and draw fouls. Before Belleville knew it, they were down 20 early in the second quarter. Freshman Aniyah Stone-Palmer was able to get some baskets in before the half ended, cutting Belleville’s deficit down to sixteen.
The second half would belong to AA Pioneer. They locked in on defense and never let up. Led by junior guard Felicia Steward, they executed on offense and played extremely hard. They grew their lead to 30 points and there it stayed. They finished the game with the win.
Scoring Leaders: AA Pioneer – DeWolf: 19 pts, 9 steals, Steward: 17 pts, 4 steals / Belleville – Stone-Palmer: 8 pts, 9 rebs
A game that featured two very talented teams, Grass Lake was almost perfect from the field the first half, shooting 45% from the field. They also were very active on defense, communicating, boxing out and crashing the boards. Carman-Ainsworth wasn’t laying down and taking it. A big block shot and crucial points in the paint from the University of Illinois commit Aaliyah McQueen kept Carman’s morale and energy high and their heads in competitive mode. 2022 guard Lexus Bargesser matched McQueen’s energy and play, getting some big basket towards the end of the second quarter and giving her team a one-point lead at halftime.
At the start of the second half, the once disciplined and focused teams were playing wild and unorganized, throwing up crazy shots and off the target passes. Midway through the 3rd quarter, both teams settled down and got back to business. Sparked by back to back three-point shots from McQueen and her fellow senior guards Chenelle King and Arie Lewis, the lady Cavaliers would go on a 12-4 run and end the quarter leading by 10. The fourth quarter would turn into a battle of focus and heart! Grass Lake regained their momentum and went on an 8-2 run of the own, fueled by aggressive play from 2021 guard Abrie Cabana. With 25 seconds left in the game, Bargesser goes into beast mode and Grass Lake within two points. But clutch free-throws from Lewis would ultimately clinch the game for Flint Carman-Ainsworth.
Scoring Leaders: Grass Lake – Cabana: 24 pts 5 rebs, Bargesser: 14 pts, 8 rebs / Flint Carman-Ainsworth – McQueen: 21 pts 13 rebs, Lewis: 15 pts 4 rebs
From the opening jump ball, Southfield A&T and their booster switch flipped to the on position. They moved the ball well, snatched down rebounds, and played aggressive fast-paced defense. Their play was so intense, Bishop Noll called a timeout early in the first quarter. Whatever was said in their huddle seemed to have a positive impact. Bishop Noll began to turn up the heat and hit Southfield with some of their own medicine. The shift in play seemed to slow Southfield down, but not by much. They still held a pretty strong lead at halftime.
Buffalo commit Cheyenne McEvans helped the Lady Warriors start the second half exactly how they started the game, full speed on both ends of the court, leaving very little breathing room for Bishop Noll. 2021 point guard Courtney Blakely was an energy source for Bishop Noll, fighting her way into the paint and finishing strong at the rim and scoring six straight points in the fourth quarter. However, the relentless effort from Blakely and her teammates just wouldn’t be enough to climb out of the hole that was dug early in the game. Southfield gets the win.
Scoring Leaders: Bishop Noll (IN) – Blakely: 21 pts 6 rebs, Rose: 10 pts, 4 rebs / Southfield A&T – McEvans: 19 pts, 13 rebs, Worthy: 17 pts, 13 rebs
In this battle of the borders matchup, it was clear from the opening tip that this was not going to be an easy win for either squad. Arbor Prep started the game on an 8-2 run, but that soon was wiped away and they found themselves down 13-8. The Lady Gators quickly recovered and was able to tie the game back up before the quarter ended. South Bend Washington soon found themselves in a similar situation midway through the second quarter. Fighting from behind and trying to finish the half strong. Led by the Reynolds Sisters, 2022 Mila, and 2023 Amiyah, the Lady Panthers were able to get back in the game and were only down by one at the halftime break.
The second half would show to be more of the same. These two teams would literally go back and forth, causing the lead to change 5 times in the half. It soon turned into a battle of the boards. The team that did the best job of rebounding and not fouling, would be the team to control the game. In the end, SB Washington outrebounded Arbor Prep 42-29 and walked away with the victory.
Scoring Leaders: Arbor Prep: Lawrence: 12 pts 5 rebs / South Bend Washington – A. Reynolds: 21 pts, 15 rebs, M. Reynolds: 21 pts, 9 rebs
Early in the game, it quickly became the Wiggins and Salebien Sisters show. Junior guard Morasha Wiggins scored her team’s first eight points, while the Salenbien Sisters; 2020 Dani and 2021 Bree, contributed to all of Lenawee’s first 12 points by either scoring or getting the assist. The game was neck and neck until the last two minutes of the first quarter when Lenawee got some big defensive stops and converted them into points. The second quarter belonged to Wiggins, as she took control of the game, scoring 19 of her Kalamazoo Central’s 26 first-half points.
The second half would be much different. K. Central did not have the same energy and fight they started the game with and Lenawee Christian took advantage of that. They went on a scoring run and held K. Central to only 6 points in the third quarter. The Lady Maroon Giants continued to fight, getting some big buckets in the final minutes of the game. However, their efforts would not be enough. Lenawee would take home the win.
Scoring Leaders: Lenawee – B. Salenbien: 24 pts, 9 rebs, D. Salenbien: 15 pts, 7 rebs / Kalamazoo Central – Wiggins: 21 pts, 3 rebs
Being the #4 ranked team in the country puts a target on your back and teams are always going to bring their “A” game when they face you. Edison knew this stepping onto the court and was ready for the challenge. Homewood Flossmoor had fire in their eyes and it was clear that they were on a mission. The proof was clear in the first half of play. Homewood hit the court locked and loaded. They did a great job of protecting the rim and keeping Edison from doing what they do best, penetrating the paint. Junior forward Grace Hall was a dominating force. She was almost unstoppable on offense and played top-notch defense. Senior point guard Daija Tyson came in the game off the bench and added an instant spark to her Edison squad. She knocked down a deep three, then got a five-second defensive call. At the half, Edison trailed by 2.
The second half was an emotional rollercoaster; for the players and fans. Both teams went back and forth trading baskets and getting defensive stops. Edison figured out a way to somewhat contain Grace Hall however they struggled to score a bucket of their own. Then midway through the third quarter, standout sophomore Ruby Whitehorn earned her 4th foul, forcing Coach Brown to take her out the game. Late in the fourth quarter, with Edison down 3, Daija Tyson once again gave her team the boost they needed to get back in the game. Tyson got a huge assist thanks to a layup from senior Ariel Jenkins. Then in the very next play got a steal and scored in transition, giving Edison the lead. They would manage to hold on for the last minute of the game and pull out the nail-biting victory.
Scoring Leaders: Edison - Tyson: 10 pts, 2 steals / Homewood Flossmoor – G. Hall: 18 pts, 5 steals
The first half of the game was definitely fast-paced and full of energy. They have similar styles of play which made the matchups fun to watch but frustrating for the players and coaches. Early in the game, Detroit Renaissance controlled the tempo of the game. Junior forward Shannon Wheeler had 3 blocks in one possession. All momentum was going their way and they maintained a decent lead through the first quarter. East Kentwood made a few adjustments to start the second quarter. Led by 2021 point guard Alexis McCully, the Lady Falcons went on a run of their own and focused in defensively. So much so they were able to hold Renaissance to only 4 points for the entire quarter and went from being down 7 to up by 1.
The tug-a-war would pick up right where it left off in the third quarter. East Kentwood would score two quick baskets, causing Renaissance to call a timeout. The Lady Phoenix would go into press mode and cause multiple back to back turnovers for East Kentwood. Sophomore guard Taylor Anderson was by far the most aggressive Renaissance player on defense. She sparked a fire that her team needed and they returned the favor, holding East Kentwood to single-digit points for the quarter. In the final quarter, the battle would continue, literally down to the last 3 seconds of the game. East Kentwood would get 4 offensive rebounds before finally scoring. However, it would be the Lady Phoenix that hold onto the final lead and never give it up.
Scoring Leaders: East Kentwood – Christopher: 13 pts 7 rebs, McCully: 12 pts 12 rebs / Renaissance – Finley: pts 3 steals, Anderson: 12 pts 5 rebs 4 steals
In the final showdown in the Best of Michigan Classic, the entire gym was ready for a battle. Both teams playing with a chip on their shoulders after taking some tough losses on Friday night. Both teams eager to redeem themselves.
The first quarter was the battle that everyone anticipated. Wayne Memorial started the game playing aggressive man to man, in your face defense and getting great offensive play from sophomore point guard Jordan Wright. Bolingbrook seemed to be not able to handle it well, but after a quick timeout discussion, they gathered themselves and punched back. In the second quarter, Wayne began to struggle with turnovers and fouls, giving Bolingbrook the push they needed to make a run. The half ended with the score and momentum of the game swinging in Bolingbrooks’s favor.
The second half would bring about more horror stories for the Lady Zebras have they continued to be plagued with turnovers, fouls and missed scoring opportunities. LSU commit Treasure Thompson caught fire and led a 10-0 run for Bolingbrook, causing them to end the third quarter with a nice double-digit lead. Wayne Memorial would attempt to fight back, but Bolingbrook was not backing down. The Lady Raiders would head back to IL with the win.
Scoring Leaders: Bolingbrook – Thompson: 20 pts, 11 rebs / Wayne Memorial – Austin: 11 pts 5 steals, Wright: 10 pts 5 assists, Micheaux: 10 pts 12 rebs