Morley Stanwood girls basketball win district opener vs Beal City

MOVING ON: Morley Stanwood’s Hannah Cornell (22) dribbles upcourt against Beal City on Monday in a Class C district quarterfinal. The Mohawks won 53-25. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

MOVING ON: Morley Stanwood’s Hannah Cornell (22) dribbles upcourt against Beal City on Monday in a Class C district quarterfinal. The Mohawks won 53-25. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

LAKEVIEW — Morley Stanwood came out strong and coasted past Beal City 53-25 on Monday to open the Class C district girls basketball tournament at Lakeview.

Morley Stanwood (18-3) fired out to a 21-0 first-quarter advantage and 37-10 halftime lead against the Aggies (5-15).

“Coming off a loss Friday night, it was good to see how our girls responded,” Morley Stanwood coach Bob Raven said. “We jumped on them early, which has kind of been our M.O. this year.”

Morley Stanwood was playing without starting senior Mallory Raven, who sustained a knee injury Friday against Kent City. Bob Raven said her status is day-to-day.

The Mohawks dominated the offensive boards in the first quarter and the Aggies couldn’t match up.

“If I was giving out a report card, I’d give us an A-plus on offensive rebounding,” Raven said. “We shot the ball pretty well. When we did miss, we went and got it. It was good to see.”

Shannon Thompson and Brooke Huested both scored six points in the opening quarter and Marissa Frye added a 3-pointer. Frye connected for two 3-pointers in the second quarter to keep the Mohawks in charge. The lead was as large as 33-4 late in the quarter.

“I definitely think teamwork was one of the key factors,” Huested said. “We really worked the ball around and shot well.”

Mikayla Thumser’s 3-pointer gave Morley Stanwood a 40-10 lead early in the third. Sadie Parker scored late in the quarter to give the Mohawks a 46-14 lead going into the fourth. She drove for a layup midway in the fourth to give the Mohawks a 48-17 lead.

Frye and Huested had 12 points apiece. Huested added eight rebounds, two steals and two assists, while Thompson had nine rebounds, three steals and two assists.

Rebounding “is what our coach wants us to focus on,” Huested said.

Natalie Gross and Paige Lorenz had six points apiece for Beal City.

Wednesday’s semifinal battle against Lakeview is expected to present a challenging test for the Mohawks.

They defeated Lakeview twice during the regular season, including a 56-19 victory at home on Feb. 12. But earlier in the season at Lakeview, the Mohawks survived a close 49-42 battle.

“I’m expecting a very tough game from Lakeview,” Raven said. “They’re a quality team and well-coached. We’ll have our hands full. At this time of year, rebounding and defense, you have to hang your hat on those. I don’t know if they’ll play a zone. Their zone can cause problems. They have seniors who have played quite a bit of ball.”

Key factors will be “rebounds, teamwork, moving the ball and shooting well,” Huested said.

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Posted by John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at jraffel@pioneergroup.com.

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