Polo takes on Holt/EL tournament
The Grand Haven girls water polo team traveled to the Hotel Varsity Tournament in East Lansing over the weekend, performing well over two days of water polo.
The Bucs finished 1-3 on the weekend but grew as a team in and out of the pool.
“Having the opportunity to go to a tournament on the East side of the state allows us to face teams we do not see on a weekly basis,” said Grand Haven head coach Kaci Wiebenga. “Being away for the weekend also opens the door for the girls to experience team bonding at a different level.
“Our goal this weekend was to learn and grow as a team while getting each player as much time in the water as possible. I would say, mission accomplished.”
Game 1 saw the Bucs take on Forest Hills, narrowly falling 6-5. Game 2 Friday night brought the Bucs a win, as they defeated Mason 16-5.
"When we played Forest Hills earlier in the season we lost 11-3," Wiebenga said. "We had 11 steals Friday and were able to make some defensive adjustments. It was great to see the girls come together and play team defense.
"After a long week of school with games Tuesday and Thursday to come together for a second game on Friday night is tough. But, the Lady Bucs did just that. The highlight of the game was having the whole team we brought with us get playing time. Everyone got to experience slowing down our offensive game, setting up, making drives, and taking smart shots on goal. Every field player scored in this game, with the exception of captain Kendall Hamm, who lead in assists."
Saturday wasn’t as easy, as Holt/EL defeated the Bucs 12-7, before they picked up another win Saturday night, 14-2 over Chelsea.
"Going into Saturday we knew, that Holt/EL would be a tough team to face," Wiebenga added. "This was an excellent learning opportunity. It gave us a chance to mix up the girls in the water and try different combinations of players in the pool.
"Against Chelsea, we were able to see a lot of what the girls learned over the weekend pay off. We stressed the importance of the little things, playing smart, and trusting your instinct."
Lydiah Baker led the Bucs with six goals on the weekend, followed by Kirsten Dykstra and Ellen Skodack with five each.
Zoe Brown racked up six assists to lead the team, while Baker nabbed 15 steals, Kendall Hamm drew four kick-puts and Kaity Klingensmith made nine saves in the cage.
The girls return to action Tuesday at Forest Hills.
Baseball splits Catholic Central
The Grand Haven baseball team traveled to Grand Rapids on Saturday to take on Catholic Central for a non-conference doubleheader.
Game 1 ended in a 10-2 Catholic Central victory. Owen Kemp took the loss on the mound, throwing four innings and giving up four earned runs on eight hits with three walks and two strikeouts. Alex Girard threw three innings of relief, giving up two earned runs on six hits.
Jax Mast led the offense with two RBIs.
In Game 2, the Bucs were out for revenge, winning 6-3.
Riley Walcott led with two RBIs, followed by Mast, Owen Krizan, Alex Kapala and Caleb King with one each.
Caleb King took the win on the mound, throwing seven innings and giving up three earned runs on seven hits with one walk and three strikeouts.
Tennis runner-up at Holland Christian
The Grand Haven girls tennis team took on the Holland Christian Invitational on Saturday, finishing second overall with 15 points.
No. 1 singles player Lilja Plumert finished 2-1 in the day with wins over Jenison (6-2, 6-1, and Spring Lake (7-6, 6-1). No. 2 Sam Korecki finished with wins over Spring Lake (6-3, 6-2), and Jenison (6-2, 6-1). No. 3 player Alyssa Hatzel won her first two matches over Spring Lake (6-4, 6-1) and Jenison (6-1, 6-2) but fell in the finals 6-2, 7-6. No. 4 singles Grace Smit did the same, defeating Jenison (6-4, 6-3) and Spring Lake (6-4, 6-1) before falling to Holland Christian (6-3, 6-1.)
In doubles play, No. 1 team of Laura Slocum and Ellie Slater, stumbled in their first game (6-2, 6-1), but defeated Jenison in the second round (6-2, 7-6) and falling in the final.
No. 2 doubles team of Miya Vliet and Clare Duplissis won their first in dramatic fashion (7-6, 0-6, 11-9), but fell to Holland Christian 6-1, 6-1, before winning their final game, 6-1, 6-2. The No. 3 team of Lexie Kalio and Makayla VanderZwaag won their first game vs. Jenison (7-6, 0-6, 11-9), before falling to Holland Christian (6-1, 6-1) and defeating Spring Lake, 1-6, 7-6, 10-8. The No. 4 team of Taylor Klein and Salome Ellis lost in their opening match (6-3, 6-4) and their second match (6-3, 6-1) but won their finale over Jenison (4-6, 6-1, 10-7).
Softball sweeps Reeths-Puffer
The Grand Haven softball team took on Reeths-Puffer for a non-conference doubleheader Saturday, winning both games.
Game 1 was close, as the Bucs took a 6-4 victory thanks to a three-run seventh inning. Grand Haven held a 2-0 lead heading into the fifth, where the Rockets played four runs to take control. One run in the sixth set up Grand Haven’s big finish for the win.
Madison Shumaker got the win from the pitcher's mound, throwing seven innings while giving up four earned runs on seven hits with zero walks and 12 strikeouts.
Haley Aldred led the offense with three RBIs, while Kaelyn Stafford and R Riemersma each batted in a run. Baby Hang knocked three hits, scoring two runs.
“Going into any season we, as coaches, assess the strengths and weaknesses of our team,” said Grand Haven head coach John Hall. “What you can’t assess is how a team will respond when the chips are down, it’s the last strike and the game is on the line. That question was answered in a big way Saturday.
“We had a 2-0 lead heading into the bottom of the fifth and were seemingly in total control of the game. We had a couple of miscommunications that were mostly my fault and gave up a few hits. The next thing you know, we are down 4-2 to a committed Division 1 pitcher with only six outs to go. With three outs to go, we were still down. To start the inning I promised freshman Skyler Covelli that if she laid a bunt down the first base line she would be safe. In that moment Skyler produced. Baby Hang follows that with a sharp single past the shortstop. Ashlyn Hall puts down a perfect sacrifice bunt to move the runners, setting the stage for Haley Aldred, one of our most trusted and battle-tested players and she produced in a big way.”
Game 2 was not as competitive, as the Bucs took a 23-6 decision over the Rockets.
Riemersma took the win in five innings, allowing five earned runs on seven hits while walking seven and striking out three.
Stafford led the way with five RBIs, finishing 5-for-5 from the plate including two home runs with five runs scored. The Bucs totaled 24 hits.
“We saw the ball well today,” Hall said. “This was a game where I could get everyone in to play. It was also a game to see the mental make up of this team. We had just won an emotional victory. As a coach, you kind of wonder how your team is going to respond and man were they locked in.”
The Bucs return to action Tuesday at West Ottawa.
Laker girls tennis takes third at Holland Christian Invite
Spring Lake girls tennis finished in third place Saturday at the Holland Christian Invitational, finishing 15 points behind eventual winner Holland Christian.
Their No. 1 doubles team of Adeline Sherman and Rachel Oostindine, who won their flight to bring home the first-place trophy, led the Lakers.
No. 1 singles Jensen Hussey, No. 2 doubles Erin Burke and Zoe Walker, No. 3 doubles Taylor Gates and Erika McSheehy and No. 4 doubles Mahli Braak and Abbi Perkins also won matches.
The Lakers next host North Pointe on Monday, April 22 at 3:30 p.m.
Trojan girls tennis wins Fruitport Tournament
Fruitport girls tennis hosted a tournament Saturday and walked away with an impressive victory, toppling Cedar Springs, Ludington and Sparta.
The Trojans won the Fruitport Invitational with 20 points. Ludington finished second with 16 points, Cedar Springs finished third with nine points, and Sparta finished fourth with three points.
Fruitport’s No. 1 singles Trinity Busscher, No. 2 singles Haleigh Winskas, No. 3 singles Olivia Parling and No. 4 singles Hannah Kelly all went 3-0 in their matches. Busscher won with scores of 6-2, 6-1, 6-1, 6-2, 7-5, 6-2.
Finding the doubles a little more challenging, Fruitport still managed victories in eight out of 12 doubles matches with No. 2 doubles Hannah Labash and Hope Busscher finishing 3-0.
Western Michigan Christian
Track takes on GR Elite
The Western Michigan Christian girls track and field team took on the GR Elite Challenge at Houseman Field on Saturday, finishing 11th overall, breaking school records in three relays.
The first came in the 400 shuttle hurdle relay team of Anika Eenigenburg, Raina Luhring, Ema Davis and Peyton Allen finished fourth at 1:22.21.
The second came in the Swedish sprint relay, where runners run ascending legs of 100-, 200-, 300- and 400-meters Davis, Eenigenburg, Ella Buursma and Allen clocked in at 2:50.06, good for sixth.
Finally, the distance medley (1,200, 400, 800, 1,600) team of Aardema, Eva Rotman, Sarah VanderKooi and Abby VanderKooi finished with a time of 13:45.14.
“Really a great day,” said WMC girls head coach Greg Gould. “As even the athletes who placed just outside the top right had really solid performances.”
The Warriors return to the track today at Ludington.
The boys team also competed at Houseman Field on Saturday, placing 3rd overall.
Finishing in second overall were Jack Zuidema in the 3,200 (10:23), Isaiah Visker, Khanya Mbtuma, Caleb Croff and Ben Sandoval took second in the shuttle hurdle relay, while the distance medley team of Eli Rotman, Daniel Plasier, Pierce Newell finished in 11:46.