Women’s hoops cruise to win in home opener

Lady Skippers win against Sinclair Community College
Chris Nelson
Guest Writer

SC4 Women’s basketball team, the defending Michigan Community College Athletic Association Eastern Conference Champions, cruised to victory in their home opener on Friday night, Nov. 13 with a 68-50 win against Sinclair Community College of Dayton, Ohio.
First-year Head Coach Akilah Edmundson welcomes several returning players from last year’s squad, as well as many talented newcomers, that will certainly place the Skippers once again as the team to beat in the conference. The Skippers open the season ranked #14 in the NJCAA Division II women’s basketball pre-season poll, while playing in the arguably the most competitive conference in the nation that boasts 3 nationally ranked teams.
The Skippers opened their game against Sinclair with a dominating 12-0 run, showing a fast paced offense that rapidly pushed the ball up court, keeping the Sinclair defense off balance. At the same time the Skipper defense was efficient and effective only allowing Sinclair’s offense to run set plays with little success. The Skippers early lead was easily maintained through the 1st quarter with a score of 21-13.
In the second quarter, the Skippers continued with the offensive pressure on Sinclair and dominated the paint with perfect execution in rebounding and boxing out. The defense was suffocating and relentless, usually allowing the opposing offense only one chance to score. The referees seemed to take a break in the 2nd quarter as the play got more physical, and what appeared to be apparent fouls went by without a whistle. Adding to this, Sinclair dropped in a couple Hail Mary 3 pointers and for a moment it seemed as if a game might be developing. Not so, despite the opportunities for Sinclair to edge closer before the half, control of the game was unchanged, and the Skippers led by 10.
In the second half, the Skippers continued with their excellent defense, hustling for loose balls, and rebounds while never letting up throughout. On offense, the women’s team continued to penetrate the Sinclair defense utilizing great passing technique to create multiple scoring chances and in turn drawing several fouls from the Sinclair defense that continued to look out of sorts. By the end of the third quarter, the Skippers were again running the court at full speed to which Sinclair had no answer.
Everyone on the Skippers roster was a contributor, though the superstar of the evening had to be Madison Valko. Madison ended the game with 32 points, on 50% shooting from the field including 3 pointers, and 80% from the free throw line. Valko seemed to score at will, and from anywhere on the court she wanted. Whether driving the lane for a hoop and foul, a jump shot or a three pointer, she can do it all, and did on this night.
Leah Humes a true point guard worthy of all the accolades she has received, was on full display for the home crowd distributing the ball to the tune of 9 assists, scoring from every angle including a nice 3 pointer in the 2nd, and on defense #4 shutdown the opposing Sinclair guards finishing with 4 steals. Tamira McCoy-Motten chipped in 8 points and 5 rebounds. Jenna Boyl contributed 6 assists from the guard spot, and added 4 points as well. Kendall Stoll and Keegan Nelson dominated in the low post leading the team with 7 and 6 rebounds respectively.
Dual sport stars from SC4’s super successful volleyball team contributed quality minutes with Briann Alspaugh scoring 10 points and 3 rebounds, Jordan Johnson added a put back hook shot for 2 points with 3 rebounds, and Caitlyn Carlson grabbed a rebound.
Sometimes you want to see a close game and a hard fought victory, well that wasn’t possible on this night. It was a dominating performance that was unrelenting on offense and defense for all 4 quarters. The Lady Skippers controlled the game from the first second to the last, ending with an 18 point victory.
The Skippers upcoming home games following the Thanksgiving break will be Tuesday December 1 at 5:30 pm against Northwood University JV, and Wednesday December 9 at 5:30 pm against Rochester College JV. The heart of the schedule will begin with Lake Michigan Community College coming to Port Huron on the Saturday December 12 at 1 pm. Be sure to get out and see some great basketball this winter, and support our Skippers Women’s Basketball team!

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