With the holiday break rapidly approaching, most prep sports teams are trying to work in their last round of competition before the new year. This week's slate of games offers up some gifts for the local audience, as rivalries and potential postseason previews are scattered across the week.
If you find a few minutes between last-minute Christmas shopping and prepping the house for relatives, here are a few local sporting events you won't want to miss out on.
Grand Haven boys basketball at Muskegon
When: Today, 7 p.m.
Where: Redmond-Potter Gymnasium
The Grand Haven and Muskegon boys basketball programs are plenty familiar with each other, as the two teams seemingly meet every district tournament in March. The Buccaneers have played the Big Reds to intense battles in recent years, with the Big Reds coming out on top in their last six postseason meetings.
Last season, Grand Haven scored a 59-51 win over Muskegon during the regular season, which spearheaded a six-game winning streak for the Bucs. If Grand Haven can find a way to upset the Big Reds on the road, it could help the squad string together another sizable win streak and enter the O-K Red Conference season with full confidence.
Grand Haven wrestling vs. Caledonia
When: Wednesday, 6 p.m.
Where: Grand Haven Fieldhouse
The Grand Haven wrestling program will get a chance to measure up to one of their primary targets in the league race this year when they host Caledonia on Wednesday.
The Buccaneers are coming off a strong showing at their home invitational this weekend, where the team started 3-0 before falling to Reeths-Puffer in the championship round of competition.
Riley Rhome and Cody Miller continue to be two of the leaders on the roster this year, as both grapplers finished 4-0 over the weekend. Chance Heineman, Trevor Rademaker, Kirk Marsman and Kaleb Butcher are also key players in the Grand Haven lineup.
Grand Haven-Spring Lake hockey at Mona Shores
When: Wednesday, 7:30 p.m.
Where: Lakeshore Sports Centre
The Grand Haven-Spring Lake co-op hockey team will get a chance to test themselves before the holiday break with a contest against Mona Shores on Wednesday.
The Buccaneers (3-5) are coming off a narrow 5-3 loss to Reeths-Puffer on Saturday, in which the team kept pace with a high-powered Rockets' attack but couldn't keep the visitors out of the net during pivotal stretches of the second period.
The Sailors (1-7) shouldn't prove to be as daunting of a challenge as the Rockets, giving the Buccaneers a chance to get back on the right foot and start a winning streak before they dive into the meat of their league schedule.
Grand Haven boys swimming at Spring Lake
When: Thursday, 6 p.m.
Where: Spring Lake Aquatic Center
The Drawbridge Classic hits the pool this week, as the Spring Lake boys swim and dive team hosts local rival Grand Haven on Thursday at 6 p.m.
Last year, Grand Haven used team depth to score a 105-81 win over the Lakers in their annual matchup, but Spring Lake returns the majority of its roster from a squad that finished third at the Division 3 state meet last winter.
With a reloading Grand Haven lineup and a squad of seasoned swimmers for the Lakers, it could make for an exciting battle between two programs that will be vying for Top 10 finishes in their respective state meets this season.
Spring Lake girls basketball at Reeths-Puffer
When: Friday, 7 p.m.
Where: Reeths-Puffer High School
The Spring Lake girls basketball team has responded with back-to-back wins since their season-opening loss to Rockford last week.
The Lakers (2-1) will get a chance to extend their win streak to three games before the holiday break hits, as they travel to Reeths-Puffer (2-1) on Friday for a non-conference clash. Last winter, the Rockets scored a 40-37 win over the Lakers at home.
However, Spring Lake returns the majority of its roster from last year, while the Rockets are working in a new-look lineup. Senior forwards Madeline Zenas and Jenna Core, combined with junior point guard Phoebe Saunders will be key players to watch, as the Lakers look to steal a potentially pivotal game in December.