11-28-19 Tri-city Area Sports

Watervliet Press Box by John Oliphant


Panther winter sports season is underway

Watervliet Middle School boys basketball teams are playing and winning and the high school teams are in full-speed practices in preparation for the seasons that start in the next two weeks.

Panther Girls Basketball reloading

The Panther girls basketball team will see an influx of new faces for the 2019-2020 season after graduating eight seniors last year. They begin their season next week, and have five home games before the holiday break.

Upcoming varsity games are Tuesday, Dec. 3 vs. Berrien Springs, 7:00 p.m. at home; Thursday, Dec. 5 vs. Eau Claire, 6:30 p.m. at home; Friday, Dec. 13 vs. Fennville, 6:00 p.m. at home; Saturday, Dec. 14 vs. Hartford at home, time TBA; Thursday, Dec. 19, at Portage Northern, 7:00 p.m.; Friday, Dec. 20 vs. Gobles, 6:00 p.m. at home.

JV Schedule: Tuesday, Dec. 3 vs. Berrien Springs, 5:30 p.m. at home; Thursday, Dec. 5 vs. Eau Claire, 5:00 p.m.; Thursday, Dec. 12 vs. Fennville, 5:30 p.m. at home; Saturday, Dec. 14 vs. Hartford at home, time TBA; Thursday, Dec. 19, at Portage Northern, 5:30 p.m.; Friday, Dec. 20 vs. Gobles, 7:30 p.m. at home.

Boys basketball starts December 10

The Panther boys basketball team will be led by Dan Hoff, who has a ton of experience leading winning basketball programs at Mattawan and Western Michigan University. Rumor has it they are learning things in new ways and Coach Hoff has put together a good group for the 2019-2020 season. Press Box will have a full preview of the team next week.

Varsity boys basketball starts their season with four home games next month: Tuesday, Dec. 10 vs. Berrien Springs, 7:00 p.m.; Friday, Dec. 13 vs. Fennville, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 14 vs. Hartford, time TBA; Friday, Dec. 20 vs. Gobles, 7:30 p.m.

JV schedule: Tuesday, Dec. 10, Berrien Springs, 5:30 p.m.; Thursday, Dec. 12, Fennville, 7:00 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 14, Hartford, TBA; Friday, Dec. 20, Gobles, 6:00 p.m. All home games.

Freshmen schedule: Tuesday, Dec. 10, Berrien Springs, 4:15 p.m.; Thursday, Dec. 12, Fennville, 4:15 p.m.; Wednesday, December 18, Bridgman, 4:00 p.m. All home games.

Wrestling begins December 11

Watervliet Panther wrestling team looks to earn their third straight district championship in 2020. The team is loaded with wrestlers which gives them an advantage in most dual meets. Press Box will have a full preview of the team in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, their December schedule is as follows: Wednesday, Dec. 11 at Vicksburg; Saturday, Dec. 14 at Galesburg-Augusta Individual Tournament; Wednesday, Dec. 18 at Coloma; Saturday, Dec. 21 at South Haven Invitational; Saturday, Dec. 28 at Martin Clipper Classic Tournament

Middle School Boys Basketball

On November 14 the 8th grade White Team began the season with a 39-21 loss to Lawton. Deejay Welch led the Panthers with 8 points and 7 rebounds. Joe Coulombe had 3 points, 4 rebounds and a blocked shot. Cole Drummond, Conner Zwar, Aiden Bethea, Ian Coleman, Isaiah Howell had 2 points each.

On November 19 the 8th grade White Team lost to Fennville, 48-27. Dominick Gardner had three steals while leading the defense and scored 6 points. Deejay Welch led with 8 points. Devin Geisler scored 4, Joseph Coulombe, Aiden Bethea, Anthony Winter, and Isaiah Howell each chipped in 2 points.

On November 20 the Panther White Team lost to Niles, 30-23. Deejay Welch collected 11 rebounds and scored 6 points. Aiden Bethea had four rebounds. Joe Coulombe played good defense with six rebounds and 2 steals and led with 8 points. Ian Colman, Dominick Gardner, Anthony Winters each had two points.

The 8th grade Maroon Team opened up their season on November 21, beating Niles 61-44. Kaiden Bierhalter led all scorers with 26 points. Wyatt Epple scored 16, and Jacob Schaefer chipped in 11.