2017-12-21 / Sports

St. Mary girls get past Hale, Bear Lake at home

5-0 Eagles head to Muskegon for holiday showcase
By Jay Bushen
Sports Editor


LEXI SCHAUB puts in two of her team-high 14 points on Monday against visiting Bear Lake. Photo: Dan Duffiney LEXI SCHAUB puts in two of her team-high 14 points on Monday against visiting Bear Lake. Photo: Dan Duffiney What a difference a season makes.

Last season, the St. Mary girls traveled to Bear Lake and returned to Lake Leelanau with a 20-point loss.

This season, the Bear Lake girls got a first-hand look at how much St. Mary has improved since then.

Another big game from senior guard Lexi Schaub lifted the Lady Eagles to a 49-36 home win over the Lakers on Monday, sending St. Mary into today’s Muskegon Catholic Central Showcase with a 5-0 record.

St. Mary coach Pete Finch said the win over a quality Bear Lake program gives his girls a big early season confidence boost.

“It was a fun one,” Finch said, “the best game we’ve had from start to finish from a consistency, effort and focus standpoint. ... I know the girls are getting it. When they put games together like that, they know we can compete.”


ALEXANDRA KIRT puts a shot up on Saturday against visiting Hale. Photo: Carol Tondreau ALEXANDRA KIRT puts a shot up on Saturday against visiting Hale. Photo: Carol Tondreau Schaub finished with 14 points and six steals. Nicole Wittman chipped in with nine points and seven rebounds. Alyssa Davis added seven points and Annalea Hobbins swatted three shots.

Finch said Schaub’s mother, assistant coach Andrea Schaub, also deserves some credit.

“She’s focused on conditioning,” he said. “We never got tired, and it looked like the other team might have. Our conditioning made a difference.”

Conditioning also played a role Saturday as St. Mary leaned on a balanced offensive attack to outlast visiting Hale in a 40-35 victory.

The matinée had somewhat of a playoff feel to it, Finch said.

“The fourth quarter got hectic,” he said. “It was great for us to be used to that kind of game. They started pressing and sending us to the line.”

Three players — Kirt, Wittman and Hanna Grant — led the way for St. Mary with eight points apiece.

Finch lauded the early season efforts of his players but pointed out his program also got off to a hot start a year ago, opening with a 7-1 record and finishing 5-6 down the stretch.

“They just know it’s one game,” Finch said. “You talk about having six seniors on the team plus a junior, who is a returning varsity player, then you add four players from an undefeated JV team. These girls like how winning feels and they’ve got the maturity to take it one game at a time.”

Today’s game against Kalamazoo Hackett is slated to start at 3:30 p.m.

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