Northville Girls Basketball Wins Holiday Tournament
The Mustangs beat Dexter 39-37.
—Submitted by Coach Todd Gudith
Just 24 hours after a thrilling buzzer beater to win the game, Northville was back at it in the Championship of the Northville Holiday Tournament vs. Dexter, who came into the game with a record of 7-0. Northville has played in the championship game all three years of the tournaments existance. The previous two tournament finals went to double overtime; this year Northville needed just one extra session to pull off the win.
As hot shooting as the Mustangs were the night before, they were equally as cold in the first quarter as Northville didn't manage any points on the scoreboard until late in the period. The Mustangs warmed up in the second quarter and was able to keep the Dreadnaughts at bay with their zone defense and take a two point lead at the half.
The Mustangs opened up a six point lead quickly in the thrid quarter on back to back buckets by Anna Giacomini and Heather Randall to go up 20-14, but Dexter rallied as they turned up the defensive pressure with a 7-0 run of their own to over take the lead 21-20 and eventually lead by three, 27-24, after the third quarter.
Northville would have a rally of their own in the fourth quarter as Kendra Brenner scored 7 of her game high 17 points to help Northville overtake Dexter and build a four-point lead at 37-33 with just under two minutes to play, but the Dreadnaughts scored twice, the last basket coming with less than 20 seconds left to tie the game. In the four-minute overtime, neither team was willing to give up any ground as both teams went scoreless until Heather Randall's basket under a minute to play was the difference.
I couldn't be any prouder of the way this group battled to the very end. Dexter starts five seniors with a lot of experience, and that's a luxury most teams don't have. We were missing four of our varsity players and had to have two players from our JV team come up (Gracie Goble and Lindsey Rathsburg) so we could dress eight. The eight that dressed tonight all had a hand in this win. They bought into our game plan to slow things down and it worked very well for us. We hadn't played zone all year and really haven't had much time to work as a whole group with the holiday break with kids being out for school events or sick, so we were pleased on how well they played.
Dexter is a very good team that runs their offense well. They found some holes, but I thought our girls did a great job late of rotating and taking away their inside game. Coming into this tournament short of a few players and having to play two good teams and winning both will just give us more confidence as we move forward. Our division is solid from top to bottom this year and playing in these close games like we have in the past few weeks will hopefully give us an advantage down the road. Northville, 5-1 overall, will open up division play when they host Salem on Friday, Jan. 4.