02-21-2019 Tri-City Area Sports

Press Box Player of the week

By John Oliphant Our Press Box Player of the Week is Watervliet’s Alex Isbrecht. Alex is a junior on the Watervliet wrestling team. Last weekend he took fourth place at the MHSAA 16-4 Regional tournament, qualifying for the state championships at Detroit’s Ford Field for the first time in his wrestling career. Alex has had a great post-season including two pins at the team districts, taking a tough White Pigeon wrestler to overtime in team regionals, collecting two pins at the individual districts to advance to regionals, and winning an exciting come-from-behind match at regionals to qualify for a trip to Ford Field. Wrestling in one of the last matches of the day, Alex was down 9-7 in the third period against a Bronson wrestler with 42 wins this year. Alex found an opening and got a reversal to tie the match and then quickly put his opponent on his back to collect three more points for the near-fall. With the clock running down he held on for the win as his teammates were going crazy knowing he was about to go to the finals. Alex, meanwhile, was just happy to have won a close match and didn’t realize his accomplishment until he noticed his coaches were a lot more excited than usual. Alex is 30-16 on the season and 77-60 in his varsity career so far. Alex credits some of his success this season to his first place finish at a tournament in Fruitport, which gave him the confidence he needed to beat some good wrestlers. He has also worked hard all year including wrestling camp in the summer and pushing himself during the brutal workouts wrestlers call “practice.” Asked about his mental state when he’s about to start a match with the traditional handshake, he said, “You can tell if they are nervous or lack strength. You can also tell if they plan to go out strong, but mostly you can tell how they feel about the sport. My main thought is that the match has now started.” Congratulations and good luck at the state championships Alex!

Dr. Andys Says… “What is good exercise? Exercising should be about movement for extended periods of time. Do not make it so strenuous or complicated that you are not consistent weekly. Move for extended periods of time for at least 3 times per week doing activities you enjoy.”

Coloma girls’ bowling coach Carley Burrell records 100th win The Coloma Comet ladies bowling coach recently recorded her 100th career victory, in only her sixth season as the Comet coach. Coach Burrell took the coaching reins over from her mother when she was only 20 years old, and in six short years has accomplished what it usually takes most coaches many more years to achieve. She relayed her overall record is an incredible 100-4, a winning percentage of 96%! As a great sports announcer once used to say, “Ohhhh My!” Carley, when she knew she had won her 100th match, said she was very emotional, and felt accomplished and proud. As stated, she took over the program from her mother, Bonnie Henry, who had coached the Coloma girls’ team to the state championship in 2010, a team that included Carley as the anchor bowler. Carley expressed, “To say I’m humbled is an understatement. I cannot thank my family, teams, and community enough for their support to help reach this accomplishment. Bowling has always been a huge part of my life for as long as I can remember.” Comet bowling teams finish first and second in conference matches The Comet girls’ bowling team recently won both the conference regular season and tournament titles. The Coloma bowlers who won first team all conference honors were Narrell Hickmon, Lainey Meader, Ashley Ikerd, Emily Feldten, Carissa Richmond, and Morgan Hosbein. The Coloma boys’ team also competed recently in the conference tournament where they finished in second place. The Coloma bowlers also finished second in the regular season with a 13-2-1 record. First team all conference were Jonathon Swetay, Damian Gomez, Charlie Cullitan, and Ryan Wilson. Nick Santarlas was honorable mention. State rankings for the Michigan High School Bowling came out on Sunday, Feb. 17, and both Coloma’s girls and boys’ teams are ranked #1 in Division 3. Congratulations to the boys and girls and best of luck for the upcoming state tournament. Coloma Comet Boys Basketball team wins 3 games in 4 days; wins Conference Championship at home, making it back to back conference crowns The Comet boys started their week on the road with a win at South Haven by a score of 69-51. The Comets led in this game all of the way, and even when the Rams outscored Coloma by nine in the third quarter, the game never seemed to be in doubt. Zach Goodline led the Comets with 25 points, Michael Dancer had 15, and Drew Goodline added another 14 points to the Coloma attack. On Friday night, back home in the Comet gym, Coloma secured their second consecutive conference crown in winning this game by a count of 76-47. They beat up on an over-matched Gobles team, who they had beaten several weeks ago by 39 points. Zach Goodline passed a few more players on the Michigan all-time scoring list as he led the Comets with a game high 36 points. One 2-pointer was a highlight on Channel 22 news, as he dribbled into the Tiger defense and put up a spinning, twisting, scoop shot under the bucket while he was getting hammered on the play by a defender. Zach also reportedly had his first triple double with 12 assists and pulling down 10 rebounds in the game, but he could only manage five steals. He came out of the game with over 5:30 left in the fourth quarter. Every man on the team contributed to the scoring in this game, and Stacey Branscomb had a career high 10 points, hitting a couple from long range. Michael Dancer had another strong game and added six points, swept the boards clean, and shut down their top player. Coloma was right back on their home court again on Saturday night to take on a very worthy opponent in the Dowagiac Chieftains, and won by a final score of 65-57. Dowagiac came in with a 10-8 overall record, and like the Comets they have played a tough season schedule. They were only beaten by Benton Harbor (by 1 point) earlier in the season. Coloma’s record with the win, their 8th straight, now stands at 14-4. They have one road game and one home game remaining on the regular season schedule. This game went back and forth for the most part, but Coloma missed an opportunity to take a big lead early. The Chieftains tried stopping Coloma’s Zach Goodline from penetrating from the top of the key, which left some wide open Comets, but those shots were not falling. The game stayed close as the teams left the court at halftime with the Comets leading by three, 29-26. The second half remained close, and Dowagiac took their first lead of the game at the 5:25 mark of the third quarter, 32-31. The teams again went back and forth and ended the third tied at 44. The Chieftain size was a big factor in keeping them in the game. They, time and again, pulled down offensive rebounds and gave themselves some easy put back, second chance buckets. Coloma, playing their third game in four days, looked to have an effect. Many of their jump shots were coming up a little short. They seemed to get their legs for a spurt in the fourth quarter as Drew Goodline hit a pair of 3-pointers and Kenny Crowder added another from long range. Coloma took a 7-point lead, and led throughout the rest of the game. Dowagiac did cut the lead to four with about a minute to play, but Zach kept the ball in his hands and hit some key free throws down the stretch. He threw one full-court pass for a layup that finished things off. Zach had another big night scoring 31 points, but his brother Drew and Michael Dancer also came up big for the Comets, as they had 13 and 12 respectively. According to Press