Grand Haven presented a tall problem for Mona Shores during their Class A district semifinal game at Grand Haven High School on Wednesday.
With the Sailors’ tallest player standing 5 feet, 10 inches, the Bucs exposed the Sailors down low with 6-5 Abby Cole and 6-1 Taylor Cramyer, as the duo combined for 30 points in their 60-37 blowout victory.
Grand Haven (22-0) moves on to Friday’s district championship game, where the Bucs will attempt to defeat Muskegon for the second time this season. The Bucs defeated Muskegon by a 59-44 score on Jan. 11, despite shooting just 12 percent in the first half.
Cole, who was fully rested after returning late in the night on Sunday from a tryout for the USA Volleyball junior national team in Colorado Springs, Col., dominated the competition in the first half, scoring 18 of her game-high 20 points. The Bucs had a 35-17 lead at the half, and continued to thrive, outscoring the Sailors in every quarter.
“I thought our team did a good job of finding Abby early,” said Grand Haven coach Katie Kowaczyk-Fulmer, noting her team’s 17 assists on 25 field goals. “They found her in a good position, where she had a 2- or 3-foot shot in the paint.”
The Bucs thrived in the high-low attack, with Craymer feeding Cole, or Craymer creating off the dribble.
“Taylor continues to play really well,” Kowalczyk-Fulmer said. “She’s so creative offensively.”
Amanda Merz led the Bucs with four assists, while Mallory Beswick came off the bench to score seven.
Bucs’ guard Angie Schultz got the start and had a solid game with four points and three steals.
Sailors’ standout guard Jasmyn Walker had 11 points and seven rebounds, but six of her points came in the fourth quarter, when the contest was already decided. Kowalczyk-Fulmer credited the strong defense of Hannah Wilkerson for keeping Walker in check.