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Practice makes perfect for Merz

Matt DeYoung • Jul 21, 2015 at 12:20 PM

With a chance to add to her team’s lead at the free throw line during last Thursday’s Class A regional championship showdown with Grandville, Bucs’ sophomore Amanda Merz bricked a pair of foul shots.

Grand Haven still managed to win a close game over Grandville, but Merz wasn’t happy about those misses at the line.

Neither was her dad, Gene, who suggested a little practice from the charity stripe before the Bucs’ quarterfinals showdown against Grand Ledge.

“I missed my two free throws at Grandville, and my dad’s like, ‘You need to go to the Y,’” Merz said with a smile. “So I went to the Y with him and worked on my free throws there. It gave me a lot more confidence.”

So much confidence that when she was fouled in the closing moments of Tuesday’s Class A quarterfinal contest, Merz stepped to the line and calmly swished a pair of free throws.

Those two points were crucial in helping ice the Buccaneers’ 43-35 win.

Merz has been a key contributor for Grand Haven all year, coming in as a sophomore and finding her spot among upper classmen who helped the Bucs hoist the state championship trophy a year ago.

Now she’ll get a chance to do the same as the Bucs advance to the state semifinals on Friday.

“I can’t describe the feeling. It’s amazing,” Merz said after Tuesday’s win in which she dished out a season-high eight assists. “This team has been amazing all year. They’re so supportive. I can’t wait to play at the Breslin.”

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