(Prep Basketball) Hannahville girls pull out tough win

HANNAHVILLE – Nobody said it’d be easy, but the Hannahville girls gained a 28-23 basketball victory over Grand Marais during homecoming activities Wednesday.

The Hannahville boys weren’t so fortuate as they dropped a 48-33 decision to the Polar Bears.

In the girls’ game, Hannahville sophomore forward Selena Williams snapped a 23-23 deadlock midway through the fourth quarter on a running jump shot from the lane.

Senior point guard Sophie Manitowabi then drained a 12-foot jumper for a 27-23 cushion with 2:52 remaining and a Williams’ free throw ended the scoring at 40.7 seconds.

“The girls started playing defense in the fourth quarter,” said Hannahville coach Josh Eagle. “They (Grand Marais) were impressive considering they had only six players. They were very patient. We enjoy playing Grand Marais because it’s always a competitive game.”

Grand Marais took its last lead (15-14) on a putback by junior Kelcie Lundquist 43 seconds into the third quarter.

A putback by senior forward and homecoming queen Mary Saldana, however, enabled Hannahville to regain the lead (16-15) just 17 seconds later.

The Polar Bears then tied the contest three more times. They pulling even for the final time at 23 on a putback by freshman Molly Conner with 5:48 left in the fourth frame.

“With six girls, it’s really not bad,” said Grand Marais coach Ray Gage. “I run them a lot in practice. They can handle any press. We have two girls (Conner and senior Taurie Horst) who haven’t played before (this season), which makes a big difference. They just need a little more experience.”

Saldana scored 11 points for the Soaring Eagles (6-2), who committed 17 turnovers.

Lundquist led Grand Marais (5-3) with nine. The Polar Bears had 19 miscues.

“Our girls were amped up to play. Only, they sometimes tend to lose their focus,” said Eagle. “I appreciate the leadership of Sophie, Selena and Mary. They’ve been fantastic leaders. They lead by example.”

The Hannahville boys were unable to keep up with Grand Marais, which led 15-6 after the first quarter and 25-14 at halftime.

Hannahville climbed within 25-20 on a jumper from the boulevard by junior guard J.J. Larson with 3:24 left in the third frame.

Grand Marais, however, didn’t allow the Soaring Eagles to get any closer.

“In all fairness to Hannahville, they were playing without one of their key guys (Tallen Boda),” said Grand Marais coach Michale Kinlaw. “This was a pretty big victory. But it will be closer the next time we play these guys, I guarantee you. Our 1-3-1 (zone) worked good tonight, although it looked like they just about to figure it out. We’ll have to think of something else next time.”

Junior Dominik Kinlaw led the Polar Bears (5-2) with 20 points. Senior Leroy Ward-Harbaum added 14.

Larson paced Hannahville (5-3) with 15 points. Junior Myron McCullough had 11.

“We made a lot of mental errors and they made us for every mistake we made, which is a mark of a good team,” said Hannahville coach Seth Miller. “We gave them too many layups. We were supposed to step up and take the charge and we didn’t do it once. We told the kids to pound the ball inside the paint and they didn’t do that either. We just didn’t do what the game plan called for. The kids hustled, but they expended more energy than they had to.”

Hannahville committed 16 turnovers and Grand Marais had 24.

The Soaring Eagles host Bay Mills Ojibwe Charter Tuesday.