FREMONT – If you haven’t received a regional championship because the Reagan Administration, it’s value an prolonged celebration.
Newaygo’s women basketball staff and its followers by no means wished to go away the ground at Fremont Excessive College Wednesday night time. That’s as a result of the Lions pulled off a 55-48 victory over Division 2 second-ranked Grand Rapids West Catholic, giving them their first regional title because the program received back-to-back Class C state championships in 1984 and 1985.
“It’s enormous. The women, it’s the identical factor each time – they work so laborious, they stick collectively, you’ll be able to see their poise. I’m happy with them. They don’t freak out. We hung powerful,” stated Newaygo coach Nate Thomasma, after his gamers took half in a trophy celebration with their scholar part and earlier than the Lions lower down the web.
Newaygo (19-1) advances to Monday’s 7 p.m. state quarterfinal at Vicksburg towards Wayland (12-2). Wayland defeated Edwardsburg in a regional last, 61-48.
West Catholic, which closes its season 16-1, performed with out star Abbey Kimball, a junior guard dedicated to Michigan State, in addition to one other key participant in sophomore Cadence Dykstra. Neither participant attended the sport Wednesday. Falcons coach Jill VanderEnde declined remark when she was requested why the 2 gamers missed the sport.
Newaygo junior Jaxi Lengthy led all scorers with 22 factors, 4 rebounds and two steals. Junior Emmerson Goodin posted a double-double with 18 factors, 10 rebounds and three assists. Senior Jaylee Lengthy added six factors for the Lions.
West Catholic senior Maddie Smith hit 4 3-pointers en path to a team-high 14 factors, whereas senior Crysta Daetwiler scored 13.
Newaygo and West Catholic had been set to satisfy within the regional finals final season, however the coronavirus pandemic introduced a untimely finish to the state match on the day of their sport.
“I couldn’t be extra happy with our basketball program and this varsity staff,” VanderEnde stated. “The six seniors that led the best way all season had been right here tonight, which makes it much more in all probability heartbreaking however the reality they may all be collectively actually is a blessing.”
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