Schoolcraft splits games against St. Clair and Macomb
By Cameron Gwinn, Staff Writer
After breezing through almost all of January with win after win, and riding a winning streak of four games, the women’s basketball team remained undefeated in conference play (4-0 in MCCAA) through Jan. 25. Schoolcraft looked forward to playing St. Clair County (Jan. 25) and Macomb (Jan. 28), who is also remained undefeated in the Michigan Community College Athletic Association Eastern Conference (MCCAA). The Ocelots were looking to closeout January on a winning note.
The Ocelots squeaked past St. Clair County Skippers on Jan. 25 with a nail biting 50-49 win to continue their unbeaten run in conference play. The team played well on both ends of the court, but the offensive side didn’t come easy. The Skippers from St. Clair, played great defense, which kept them in the game.
The unselfish play from all the Ocelots is what keeps the offense afloat. “Passing is very important for us,” said Taia Parker. “Every player needs to touch the ball.”
One player who stood out was Jade Smith. Smith scored 13 points to help seal the win. Two of these points came in the winning seconds of the fourth quarter to give the Ocelots a lead. A defensive stop is all the women needed to finish of the Skippers and push their winning streak to five games.
Smith after the game was looking forward to getting better. “This game was a wake-up call for us,” said Smith. “We really need to keep getting better and start practicing and improving.”
While the Ocelots continued their winning streak the Macomb Monarchs did as well, beating Mott 51-48 (Jan. 25).
The Jan. 28, matchup proved to be a clash of the only unbeaten teams in the MCCAA’s (Michigan Community College Athletic Association) Eastern Conference.
Coming into the Jan. 28 game, the Monarchs only allow 26.6 points against them on average, which ranks them first in the nation. However, that didn’t stop the Ocelots from stepping up their game. Unfortunately despite the effort, the Ocelots fell short to the Monarchs 55-52.
The Monarchs outstanding position play from Sade Lemons and Jane Kurkowski put Macomb over the top. Both Lemons and Kurkowski combined for just under 30 points. The Ocelots could not find a way to get the two guards to stop racking up points.
The game came down to the final 3.9 seconds. The Monarchs had the ball out of bounds on the sideline, but were unable to inbound the ball within five seconds giving the ball back to Schoolcraft close to their net with a chance to force overtime with a three pointer. Unfortunately, the shot did not make it, but Coach Kinzer was proud of her team.
“I’m very proud of the girls keeping their heads,” Kinzer continued “they [the team] understand it’s just one game and we will see them [Macomb] again.”
The Ocelots are now 6-14 on the season and 5-1 in the MCCAA Eastern Conference with all eight of their remaining games being against conference opponents. Schoolcraft’s next two games will be away at Oakland Community College (Feb. 8), and Mott (Feb.15) .The team will return home on Feb. 22 to face Delta College at 5:30 p.m.
For more information on team schedules, stats and rosters go to www.mccaa.org.