2017-12-28 / Sports

Trojans hand Eagles fifth straight defeat


ST. MARY senior Andrew Tondreau attempts to muscle his way past Central Lake post players last Thursday. 
Photo: Carol Tondreau ST. MARY senior Andrew Tondreau attempts to muscle his way past Central Lake post players last Thursday. Photo: Carol Tondreau A new year is four days away — and that’s good news for coach Jim Dybevik and the St. Mary boys basketball team.

“We just need to take a fresh look at 2018 and dedicate ourselves to improving our skill and trying to get better every day in every way,” Dybevik said.

The team showed room for improvement in its 2017 finale last Thursday, a 71-38 home loss to Central Lake.

Dybevik said his Eagles got off to a slow start and never recovered.

“They just came off a state championship. They’re winners,” Dybevik said in reference to Central Lake’s recent success in 8-player football. “They know what it is to do that; we haven’t gotten over that hurdle yet. I thought we were close in our first two games, but we’ve gone the other way.”

The Eagles (1-5, 0-1 Cherryland) once again struggled to execute offensively, shooting 31 percent from the floor and 29 percent from long range.

Dybevik said his team forced the ball, capping its first three possessions with turnovers, and could have been much better on its own end.

“We’ve got to do a better job on defense,” he said. “When teams are shooting 48 percent and we’re in the 30s, every possession is important.”

Harrison Schaub led the Eagles with 10 points; Zavier McKillip netted nine. Shawn Grant and Austin Tarsa each chipped in with six points.

Dybevik wasn’t too down on his boys after the loss, however, especially against a bigger Central Lake squad that won the rebound battle 46-32.

“I want to compliment the kids,” he said. “They hustled and rebounded the best they could. Their kids were just 6 to 8 inches taller.”

The Eagles will look to snap their five-game slide — and start 2018 off right — when they host the Traverse City Bulldog Athletic Association next Thursday at 7:30 p.m.

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