Hawks’ Radcliffe gets first conference win
By Journal Sports Staff
DOLLAR BAY — It’s been four years in the making.
No, not the presidency, but a conference win for Republic-Michigamme girls basketball coach April Radcliffe.
The Hawks climbed back in the game in the second quarter, then shut the door on Dollar Bay after that to take a 42-26 victory and improve to 1-6 this season and 1-3 in the Copper Mountain Conference.
“Everybody was very excited,” Radcliffe said. “We played really well. Our defense, we used a halfcourt trap and got quite a few steals.”
She said she had to give her girls a pep talk after R-M fell behind 8-3 after one quarter.
“I told the girls we need to play like they’re pressing us,” Radcliffe said. “We seem to play better when we’re playing faster.”
That must’ve done the trick as the Hawks not only erased the deficit, but built a 19-14 halftime lead.
The advantage only got bigger in the second half as R-M took a 32-20 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
R-M senior Nikki Wertanen led all scorers with 16 points, which included three 3-pointers, while junior teammate Tailyn Raisanen added 12 and sophomore Allie Radcliffe had nine. The latter two each had a pair of triples.
“We worked the ball around the top on offense with Allie, Tailyn and Nikki looking for an opening,” the coach said.
The Hawks also survived Raisanen and Allie Radcliffe fouling out in the late going.
Next up for R-M is a road game at Watersmeet on Wednesday.
At Ishpeming, the Patriots could feel fortunate that they built a big 50-25 lead after three quarters as they scored just four points in the final quarter.
The lion’s share of the lead was built in the first quarter when the Patriots raced to a 21-6 advantage as Tessa Leece scored 12 of her game-high 22 points.
Still undefeated, Westwood pushed the lead to 33-13 by halftime, adding five more points to make it a 25-point edge after three quarters.
Westwood Madi Koski added 11 points as the Pats didn’t make any 3-pointers.
Houghton was led by Cassie Ryynanen with 17 points.
At Carney, the Mustangs had trouble with their offense, not reaching double digits in scoring in any quarter.
The Wolves didn’t exactly light up the scoreboard either, taking narrow leads of 10-7 after one quarter, 18-16 at halftime and 30-25 after three periods.
Daryn Johnson scored nearly half of Munising’s points with 15 that included a pair of 3-pointers.
The Mustangs made 7 of 11 free throws (64 percent) to just 5 of 12 for C-N (42 percent).
The Wolves’ Layla Blahnik-Thoune led all scorers with 19 points, seven coming in the final quarter.
Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.