Watervliet traveled to Coloma Tuesday, January 9 for girls’ varsity basketball action in the Southwestern Athletic Conference – Lakeshore Division. Watervliet opened the game with a 10-6 first period lead. The Panthers added 10 points in the second period and held Coloma to eight. At intermission, the score favored Watervliet 20-14. Both teams struggled in the first half of play with numerous missed shots and sloppy ball protection. However, the squads were able to settle in and improved as sixteen minutes ticked off the clock. Coloma played a stronger defense in the second half, as the team scored six points and limited Watervliet to seven points.
NO ARM, WHAT FOUL? Watervliet’s Kara Liles got her hands on nothing but ball last Tuesday night as she defended the basket against a shot by Coloma’s Mika Anderson, although the officials saw the play differently and whistled Liles for the foul. Liles scored two points and Anderson had five in the 38-33 Watervliet road win. (TCR photo by Kristy Noack)
In a fourth quarter frenzied attack, both teams netted double digits, as Coloma outscored Watervliet 13-11. Watervliet won the contest 38-33. Ariana Rowe led the Panthers with 15 points. Madalyn Hutchins scored three 3-pointers for her nine-point contribution. Zoe Smith tallied seven points. Jaelyn Pitre hit a 3-pointer and had five rebounds. Kara Liles and Celina Klimkiewicz scored two points each. Klimkiewicz was credited with three steals, while Liles grabbed five rebounds and blocked three shots. The Panthers hit four buckets from beyond the arc and shot 80% from the free throw line, hitting eight of ten shots. Coloma was led by Morgan Wagner with 10 points. Wagner had three 3-pointers in the contest. Kayla Yore contributed eight points to the Comet cause. Mika Anderson and Megan Neubecker scored five points each, and Phoebe Brown netted three points. Hannah Mathis scored two points for Coloma. The Comets drilled five 3-pointers and shot 50% from the charity stripe, hitting four of eight shots. “We played hard,” Watervliet head coach Jason Forrester commented following the game. “I started a couple juniors this time and they did a really good job. We had too many turnovers, but it’s kind of expected coming off a long break. Coloma’s a good team and played really good defense. I thought we matched their intensity tonight. “We had one sub Madalyn Hutchins come in and hit three straight threes. That was nice to see her have some success; she’s dedicated.” With the win, Watervliet improved to 4-0 in the Lakeshore Division.
Cortes gives Hartford boost in 56-46 victory over Cassopolis
Jessica Cortes led the way for Hartford Tuesday, January 9 as the varsity basketball squad welcomed Cassopolis to Indian Territory. Cortes scored 15 points in Hartford’s 56-46 win over the Rangers. It was almost a cake walk for the Indians as they led from the get-go. In the first period alone, the Indians scored 20 points and held Cass to just six points. In the second period, Hartford dropped in another 17 points, while Cass scored eight. At the half-way mark, Hartford led 37-14. In the third period, Cassopolis appeared to be a different team. The squad was tighter with their shots, rebounded off the boards better, and matched Hartford in intensity. The Rangers’ effort resulted in 11 points, although Hartford outscored them with 13 points. At the close of the third period, Cass trailed 50-25. Talk about a flip-flop in the final period of the game. Cassopolis ratcheted up their defense. Their coverage limited Hartford to six points. Additionally, Cassopolis finally found the basket and scored a whopping 21 points in their rally attempt. Hartford was able to hold on for the lead even after they were shut down in the fourth. The Indians notched their sixth victory of the season with the 56-46 win. Cortes led the Indians with 15 points, all five shots coming from beyond the arc; she also had four steals. AJ Jackson scored 12 points and had eight rebounds. Mikenzie Chambers tallied 11 points and grabbed eight boards. Megan Nelson added nine points. Cora Wesaw scored five points, and Elly Valdes had four. The Indians shot 58% from the free throw line, hitting 11 of 19 shots.
Coloma girls bowling rolls on with perfect season
Carley Burrell, Coloma’s girls’ varsity bowling coach, is extremely proud of her team. The squad is on a roll as they remain undefeated in the Kalamazoo Valley Conference. The Comets were at home Wednesday, January 10 to take on Kalamazoo Christian. Coloma won 29-1. Carissa Richmond let Coloma with the high series after she rolled a 160 and 211. Lainey Meader’s 161 was the high game in the first contest. Richmond’s 211 was the high game in the second contest. Meader had a 338 series, and Emily Feldten rolled a 336 series. Coloma scored 783 pins compared to Kalamazoo’s 531 in game one. Game two found the Comets on top with an 809-pin count, while Kalamazoo had 499. Coloma took the series 1,592 to 1,030.
Everything comes up Comets in 85-59 win over Watervliet
Coloma and Watervliet faced off Tuesday, January 9 with a little varsity basketball action on the Comets’ home court. You could say everything came up Coloma, as the squad rolled over Watervliet 85-59.
OVER, UNDER, THROUGH… Coloma’s Zach Goodline swooped past Watervliet’s James Bell (32), Bryant Kieft (30), and Sheldon Tobar (44) Tuesday, January 9. The Comets welcomed Watervliet and scored an 85-59 victory. Goodline led Coloma with 36 points. (TCR photo by Kristy Noack)
That’s not to say Watervliet didn’t give it their all. But, a couple of questionable foul calls and a sneaky Comet offense set the Panthers back on their heels. Coloma took a 21-12 lead after the first period thanks, in part, to Zach Goodline’s plow-through offense. Goodline drove to the bucket numerous times and seemed to fake and fade his way around defenders with ease. Watervliet’s offense sprang to life in the second period as the Panthers scored 22 points to keep pace with Coloma. The Comets netted 24 in the second period, which gave them a 45-34 lead at intermission. The contest was very physical and very explosive at times. Hard fouls were exchanged by both teams, and each rebound attempt seemed to feature bumping, banging, and flailing to get a hand on the ball. Coloma burst into the third period without missing a beat and scored 21 points. Watervliet was silenced by both the Comet offense and defense; the Panthers put eight points on the board and trailed 66-42 at the end of the period. The game’s intensity picked up in the fourth period as the squads traded buckets. Coloma added 19 points, Watervliet added 17, and the Comets won the game 85-59. The fouls were aplenty during the contest. Coloma was whistled for 26 team fouls and Watervliet had 20. Coloma’s Robbie Schroeder, always strong under the bucket, and Watervliet’s Garrett Matthews fouled out of the game. Watervliet’s Dan Cluster was whistled for a technical foul during the contest. Coloma’s Goodline led the team with 36 points. He got plenty of help off the bench as 11 other Comets scored points. Tevon Blazier scored 12 points. Phillip Caldwell chipped in nine points, while Robbie Schroeder had six. Brendan Lute scored five points for Coloma, and Adam Hearn had four. Levi Wilkens and Chris Brown dropped in three points each. Michael Dancer, Hunter Crist, and Zack Lake scored two points apiece. Willie Donald contributed one point. The Comets netted six 3-pointers and shot 76% from the free throw line, hitting 19 of 25 shots. Watervliet was led by Sheldon Tobar with 13 points. Jakob Aldrich scored 10 points, and Dan Cluster had nine. Bryant Kieft accounted for eight points. Austin Roberts and Lamarrius Smith scored five points each. Ryan Chisek tallied four points, as Garrett Matthews scored three. James Bell had one field goal for his two points. Watervliet had two 3-pointers and shot 54% from the charity stripe; they made 13 of 24 attempts. Coloma head coach Paul Marfia commented, “We knew they were bigger than us and we had to control the game by the tempo. I felt we played out of control in the second quarter and sloppy. We gave them 10 free throw attempts in the second quarter. We have to hang our hat on our half-court defense. I was also disappointed in how easily we let Cluster control the paint in the first half. Levi Wilkens did a great job setting the tone on the defensive end to start the first and second half.”
Coloma wrestlers host conference quad with Watervliet, Schoolcraft, Constantine
Coloma hosted a Southwestern Athletic Conference quad Wednesday, January 10. Participating teams included Constantine, Schoolcraft, and Watervliet. Five athletes from Coloma beat their Constantine opponents in contested matches. Jamane Smith Jr. (189 lbs.) earned a 17-13 victory over his opponent. Brandon Sutherland (215), Cole Alsup (heavyweight), Blane Sutherland (112 lbs.) and Ian Ishmael (140 lbs.) pinned their opponents. Coloma lost 43-27 to Constantine. Against Schoolcraft, Coloma was defeated 48-24. Dallen Turner (171 lbs.) earned a 10-7 victory. Smith (215 lbs.) and Ishmael (145 lbs.) won their respective matches by pins. Cody Reece posted a 6-0 victory in the 140-lb. weight class. Constantine topped Watervliet 51-22. Four Panthers won their contested matches. Dillon Clemons (112 lbs.) pinned his opponent. Klayton Marshall (130 lbs.) nabbed an 8-0 win. Coby Henslee (140) and Anthony Wade (160 lbs.) earned 6-2 victories. Schoolcraft beat Watervliet 59-9. Of the contested matches won by Watervliet, Marshall (130 lbs.) won by a 4-0 score, and Wade (160 lbs.) pinned his opponent for the win.
Tenacious Panther team tangles with Lawrence, gets the W
In what might be the biggest challenge the Watervliet Lady Panthers basketball team has faced thus far this season, the squad took on Lawrence Friday, January 12 and earned a hard-fought 59-54 victory. Watervliet has played well all season. But, this team is different from last season’s team which was physical, demanding, and a bit more polished. This year’s squad, even with a perfect 4-0 record heading into Friday’s game, continues to try and find themselves and play to their strengths. Watervliet started the game without much spark and dismal shooting. Lawrence enjoyed a 15-7 lead after the first eight minutes of play. But, the Panthers picked up the pace -and the buckets – in the second quarter. The squad settled into shooting and scored 17 points, while Lawrence dropped in 14 points. At the half, Lawrence led 29-24. Watervliet carried the second quarter momentum into the third quarter. They once again outscored Lawrence, this time 15-11 to chip away at the Tigers’ lead. As the fourth quarter opened, Watervliet trailed by just one point, 40-39. It was once again Watervliet in control in the fourth period. The squad scored 20 points to snatch the win away from Lawrence 59-54. Ariana Rowe led Watervliet with 19 points, 10 of which came in the third period. Jaelyn Pitre scored 13 points. Madalyn Hutchins tallied seven points, and Vicky Smith, Celina Klimkiewicz, and Kara Liles scored four points apiece. Taylor Shafer added one point. With the victory, Watervliet improved to 7-1 overall and remained undefeated in the SAC – Lakeshore Division with a 5-0 record. Coloma continues domination of opponents, remains perfect at 7-0 Coloma varsity basketball head coach Paul Marfia has to be impressed with his team. The squad continues to dominate its competitors and remains undefeated in the Southwestern Athletic Conference – Lakeshore Division. On Friday, January 12, the Comets faced a struggling Saugatuck squad. Coloma had no shortage of weapons at their disposal as four players scored in double digits with three others joining the fray in single digits. The Comets opened their offensive effort early, taking a 21-10 first period lead. Second period action saw Coloma build on their lead and their resulting effort yielded a 39-20 lead at halftime. The Coloma defense went into overdrive in the second half of the ballgame, shutting down Saugatuck. The Comets limited their rivals to eight second-half points, four in each quarter. Meanwhile, Coloma scored 18 points in the third period and nine in the fourth to take the 66-28 victory. The win pushes Coloma to 7-0 overall and 5-0 in the SAC – Lakeshore division. Zach Goodline led the Comet effort with 21 points, including three 3-pointers. Robbie Schroeder scored 12 points. Phillip Caldwell dialed in 11 points, including three 3-pointers. Michael Dancer had a heck of a game. He scored 11 points, grabbed eight boards, and had seven steals. Levi Wilkens dropped in six points. Kenny Crowder and Adam Hearn scored two points each. Tevon Blazier tallied one free throw. The Comets struggled at the free throw line, landing just eight of 17 attempts (39%). Coloma head coach Paul Marfia credited his defense with the win. “We created 34 turnovers by our defensive rotations and ball pressure. Robbie (Schroeder) and our team really took pride in setting the tone with our defense.”
Hartford clipped by Centreville
It was another close game for the Indians of Hartford on the basketball court Friday, January 12. The team traveled to Centreville for varsity basketball action and fell 58-54. Hartford struggled early in the first quarter, scoring seven points as Centreville took the 12-7 lead. However, the Indians bounced back in the second period amid a scoring blitz by both teams. Hartford put 17 points on the board, while Centreville scored 20. At intermission, Hartford trailed 32-24. The Indians attacked in the second half of the game, scoring 18 points in the third quarter and 12 in the fourth quarter. Despite their best effort and intention, the Indians fell 58-54 on the road. Aaron Sinclair led Hartford with 16 points. William Martinez tapped in 15 points. Brandon Galvan scored 12.
Centreville crushes Hartford 68-27
The Lady Indians suffered their second defeat of the varsity basketball season Friday, January 12 at the hands of Centreville.
HARTFORD HUSTLE… Hartford’s Angela Saldana attempts a layup Tuesday, January 9 as the Indians faced Cassopolis. Hartford improved to 6-2 for the season after notching the 56-46 victory. (TCR photo by Kristy Noack)
Hartford’s road game ended in a 68-27 loss, after the Indians failed to find their footing and trailed the entire game. In the first period, Hartford fell behind 14-8. Centreville set the pace in the second period by scoring 18 points and virtually shut down Hartford’s offensive effort. The Indians scored eight points and trailed 32-16 at the half. An 11-point second half spelled doom for the Indians. Centreville outscored Hartford by a 36-11 margin and won the contest 68-27. AJ Jackson led Hartford with eight points and seven boards. Jessica Cortes and Mikenzie Chambers scored five points each.
Fruitport Legends Tournament yields area championships
Wrestling teams headed to Fruitport High School Saturday, January 13 for the Fruitport Legends Tournament. Nine teams including the Panthers of Watervliet hit the mat. Wrestling their way to first place championships for Watervliet was: Trever Pelton (103 lbs.), Klayton Marshall (130 lbs.), Logan Swigart (189 lbs.), and Matt Melcher (215 lbs.). Second place finishers included Watervliet’s Anthony Wade and Isaiah Yazel. Alex Isbrecht of Watervliet took third place at the event.
FRUITPORT FOUR… The Watervliet varsity wrestling team produced four individual champions and placed third as a team at the Fruitport Legends tournament on Saturday. Pictured (from the left): Coach Dan Isbrecht, Alex Isbrecht, Logan Swigart (189 lb. champion), Korbin Camp, Klayton Marshall (130 lb. champion), Anthony Wade, Trever Pelton (103 lb. champion), Dillon Clemmons, Don Smith, Isaiah Yazel, Matt Melcher (215 lb. champion), and Coach Joe Isbrecht.
Hartford grapplers participate in Parchment Invitational
The Hartford wrestling team was on the road Saturday, January 13. The squad participated in the Parchment Invitational which included teams from Comstock, Gull Lake, and Fennville. Hartford lost 48-27 to Comstock. In contested matches, Hartford’s Alonzo Garcia (215 lbs.), Noah Wade (heavyweight), Tye Phillips (119 lbs.), and Zack Harris (171 lbs.) won their matches. Hartford was topped by Gull Lake 78-6. Noah Wade was the lone Indian to win his contested match in the heavyweight bout. The Indians won their bouts against Fennville 39-30. Of contested matches, Trenton Hicks (103 lbs.), Phillips (119 lbs.), Harris (171 lbs.), and Garcia (189 lbs.) posted wins for Hartford.
Coloma 3-2 at Brent Stephenson Memorial duals
Coloma grapplers headed to Mendon Saturday, January 13 for the Brent Stephenson Memorial duals. Coloma notched victories over Niles (55-15) and Paw (40-39) but lost to Harper Creek (40-39), Edwardsburg (52-27), and Pennfield (49-29). Against Harper Creek, Shane Champion (125 lbs.), Ian Ishmael (140 lbs.), Cody Reece (145 lbs.), Dallen Turner (171 lbs.), Jamane Smith Jr. (189 lbs.), and Brandon Sutherland (215 lbs.) won their contested matches. Sutherland (215 lbs.), Cole Alsup (heavyweight), Reece (140 lbs.), Michael Case (152 lbs.), and Smith (189 lbs.) won their contested matches against Edwardsburg. Contested match victories by the Comets against Niles included: Champion (125 lbs.), Noah Mart (135 lbs.), Ishmael (140 lbs.), Reece (145 lbs.), Alec Delatorre (152 lbs.), Case (160 lbs.), Sutherland (189 lbs.), Smith (215 lbs.), and Alsup (heavyweight).
ALSUP GETS THE WIN BY PIN… Coloma heavyweight Cole Alsup works the shoulder of Constantine’s Matthew Hutton to the mat last Wednesday. Alsup pinned Hutton in the first period. Coloma lost 43-27. (TCR photo by Kristy Noack)
Mart (135 lbs.), Ishmael (140 lbs.), Reece (145 lbs.), Turner (171 lbs.) Smith (189 lbs.), and Alsup (heavyweight) won their contested matches against Paw Paw. Coloma also earned victories in the following contested matches against Pennfield: Reece (140 lbs.), Ishmael (145 lbs.), and Smith (215 lbs.).
Baker Tournament win goes to Coloma
The Coloma girls’ varsity bowling team won the Division 2 Battle of the Bakers tournament championship Saturday, January 13 in Battle Creek. To qualify for bracket play, 12 teams played 12 Baker games. After two games, Coloma held fifth place. Following four games of play, the Comets moved up to third place. After six games, Coloma held fourth place. The squad maintained fourth place through the next six games. The top eight teams moved on to bracket play. Coloma, as the fourth seed, played Portland in the first round of bracket play. Coloma took two of three games: 128-189, 171-168, 169-136. In the semi-finals match against eighth-seed Ithaca, Coloma rolled to the victory: 105-114, 168-117, 146-124. With the wins in hand, the Comets headed into the finals against third seed Jonesville. Coloma won two straight games 125-116, 169-111 to claim the championship title. According to Coloma head coach Carley Burrell, the first state rankings of the season will be released January 19. Coloma will definitely make the cut. Will they pull in the #1 ranking? Comet fans have their fingers crossed.
Watervliet wallops Lawrence 66-22 as Aldrich scores 14
Watervliet varsity basketball hosted Mentor Appreciation Night Friday, January 12 with a game against Lawrence. The Panthers played to a 66-22 win. Jakob Aldrich led Watervliet with 14 points. Also topping double digits for the Panthers were: James Bell with 12 points and Dan Cluster with 10 points. Garrett Matthews chipped in nine points.