For the second straight year, the Indian Lake/Long Lake Lady Orange ousted perennial power Westport from the Section VII/Class D tournament, moving them one step closer to defending their title.
The Orange scored a 47-42 win over the Eagles in the semifinal round at AuSable Valley Middle/High School Tuesday, Feb. 28, a year after beating them in the Class D finals.
“We just want to make last year’s seniors proud of us,” Jessica Bain said after the game. “We saw how much pride people took in this team last year, and we want to make them feel that pride again.”
“This is a great feeling,” head coach John Reynolds said after the game. “Westport is such a quality program with such quality people. This is a thrill for us.”
Tied at 17-17 after the first half of play, the Orange used a 16-9 third quarter to jump out to a 33-26 lead. The Orange went 6-for-12 from the free throw line in the final minutes of the game to hold on to the lead.
Meg Smith led the Orange with 19 points and seven rebounds, scoring many points off the screen-and-roll.
“I was challenged to make more shots in this game,” Smith said. “I think that we got more confidence in the screen-roll play the more it was working. I think that we all played with a lot of heart and played the best game that we have all season.”
“We got her the ball in good places,” Reynolds said. “She came up big in the second half not only scoring, but also grabbing a lot of key rebounds.”
“I thought that they ran a great pick-and-roll play and we could not get into the lanes to stop it,” Westport coach Hokey McKinley said. “Meg would get the ball off the screen and have a guard on her. They hit some foul shots at the end to beat us.”