Shorthanded Sabers fall to St. Mary, 49-25

Manistee Catholic Central’s Sarah Bialik (5) drives to the basket during the Sabers’ 49-25 loss to Lake Leelanau St. Mary Tuesday night.  (Scott Yoshonis/News Advocate)

Manistee Catholic Central’s Sarah Bialik (5) drives to the basket during the Sabers’ 49-25 loss to Lake Leelanau St. Mary Tuesday night. (Scott Yoshonis/News Advocate)

MANISTEE — Manistee Catholic Central gave Lake Leelanau St. Mary a spirited effort early Tuesday night, but a 15-0 Eagle run doomed the Sabers to a 49-25 non-conference loss.

Jenna Bialik scored a team-high 7 points and Rylee Feliczak and Nicole Kaminski added 5 each for MCC, who was without the services of starting center and leading rebounder Liz Nelson. Nelson is off on the annual mission trip to the Dominican Republic this week.

Sabers head coach Todd Erickson said that her presence on the boards was missed.

“We gave up 25 offensive rebounds to them,” Erickson said. “If you give up 10 you can live with it, but you can’t give them 25 extra shots.”

While the Sabers had to make do with 7 players, St. Mary was able to substitute all five players at a time on several occasions, and had 11 players participate.

Ten of them got on the scoresheet, led by Hanna Grant, who scored a game-high 13 for the Eagles.

MCC (1-10) came out firing, and held a 7-6 lead halfway through the first quarter.

But St. Mary (10-2) reeled off the next 15 points, including a fortunate 3-pointer at the first-quarter buzzer, and never trailed again.

“I thought we played pretty decent when we started the game, (with) good passing, quality shots,” Erickson said. “We knew that Hanna Grant is a very nice player, a senior who shoots the ball well.”

MCC trailed 14-26 at the half, a score that could have been closer if not for missing 5 of its 7 free throws in the first half.

Feliczak cut the lead to single digits early in the third quarter with a nifty jump-hook and a free throw, but St. Mary went on a 21-2 run from there, interrupted only by a tough basket inside by Samantha Wilkosz, and ran out with the win.

Wilkosz fouled out late, but not before pulling down a team-high 10 rebounds in the contest.

Erickson said that his shorthanded team, small to begin with, was simply gassed down the stretch.

“I told them, ‘You all worked hard, you can see how your tongues are hanging out right now,’” he said. “It is what it is, we need more help, but right now we don’t have any.”

Next up for the Sabers is a trip to Big Rapids to face 1-12 Crossroads on Thursday, Feb. 1.

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Posted by Scott Yoshonis

Scott is the sports editor of the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach him at (231) 398-3112 or syoshonis@pioneergroup.com.

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