The Grand Ledge Girls JV basketball team took the court Tuesday night against a tough Haslett Vikings team.
The Comets got off to a slow start as they were held scoreless through the 1st quarter of play and a significant amount of the 2nd quarter. “We seemed a little nervous offensively and played out of character,” explained Coach Josh Charter. “Our tough defense kept us in game as we struggled to score. Brianna Eichelberger’s big block to end the first quarter got some excitement going on our sideline and from our fans.”
The Comets found themselves down 11 to 0 midway through the 2nd when Shaelyn Sage finally got the Comets on the board with a free throw. “Once we saw the ball score our confidence went from very low to extremely high as we closed the half on a 13 to 5 run,” said Charter.
As the second half began, the Comets began to shift the momentum their way. The Vikings, who led by 5 at the break, held onto a 1 point lead going into the 4th quarter. The 4th quarter was like a heavyweight prize fight. Every time the Comets made a great play the Vikings would respond with one of their own. After a late time out by the Vikings, Coach Charter asked his players to dig a little deeper and to get to a stop on the defensive end. The Comets pressure defense forced a Viking turnover. With under a minute to go and trailing by two points, the Comets called a timeout to set a play up to get a shooter an open look.
Ali Spalding cut through a double screen knocking down a huge three pointer giving the Comets a one point lead. However, the Vikings were able to beat the Comets down the floor in transition and get a quick bucket of their own to regain the lead. With 17 seconds left, the Comets left their huddle following a timeout with a chance to win the game. With the clock winding down Megan Willoughby drove to the basket off a great screen from McKenna Burke. Willoughby’s contested layup went up, off the backboard, and through the hoop with just under 4 seconds to play.
A quick timeout would give the Vikings one last chance, but the Comets defense sealed the victory with a steal on the inbounds play. The final score was Grand Ledge 38 and Haslett 37.
“The coaches are really proud of the way we handled struggling early, overcoming adversity and executing down the stretch. We’ve got a tough group of players. There is no quit in these girls. We talk before each game about players play and tough players win,” said Charter. “This was a great team effort starting with a great practice yesterday.”
The Comets are now 11-1 overall and 7-0 in the CAAC Blue division. They travel to Lansing Everett Thursday night to take on the Vikings. The game time is scheduled at 7:00pm.