HILLMAN-It's always a tense situation when winless teams meet up as one team will walk away with the precious "W" while the other will sink further into winlessness.
The Hillman girls basketball team hosted Rogers City Hurons on Tuesday and the Hurons walked away with a 48-43 win over the Tigers.
The first quarter started out very slow for both teams. Hillman's Jensen Tchorzynski scored the basket of the game 10 seconds in and Hillman led for the first five minutes. Rogers City's Lindsey Claus hit a free throw while Morgan Hall hit a field goal to take the lead 3-2.
News Photo by Eric Benac
Hillman’s Jensen Tchorzynski (24) drives past Rogers City’s Courtney Streich (11) and Lindsey Claus. Rogers City beat the Tigers 48-43.
It was a lead the Hurons kept for the first quarter as Hillman struggled to score. Alissa Jones hit a single free throw with no time left to help bring Hillman closer, 7-3.
HIllman coach John Kuzewski commented on his team's slow start.
" The girls came out really slow tonight in the first quarter. I give Rogers City a lot of credit for coming out and putting pressure on us. That's what you're supposed to do as the home team but we didn't pick up the pressure until later," he said.
Hillman immediately began to put more pressure on the Hurons in the second quarter. Abby Olree sank two field goals in rapid succession to bring Rogers City's lead to 9-7. A series of strong offensive plays by Olree, Alissa Jones and Tchorzynski helped bring Hillman to within one point of taking the lead.
Morgan Hardies sank her first basket of the night to retake the lead from the Hurons 18-17. 30 seconds later. This was the last time Hillman held a lead. Nikkie LaLonde scored the second of her two baskets in the quarter to take the lead at 19-18 with 1:25 left in the quarter. Hillman did sink three free throws in the last minute to narrow the lead to 23-21.
Rogers City took firm control of the third quarter with a three-pointer by Brooklyn Idalski thirty seconds into the period. Hillman's Taylor Crawford narrowed the lead to 26-23 by hitting a field goal 10 seconds later.
Both teams hit a dry spell for the next few minutes before Tchorzynski scored one of three treys for Hillman. However, Hillman didn't score again for the whole quarter as Rebecca Meredith of Rogers City hit three field goals to help bring the Hurons' lead to 34-26.
Hillman's dry run in the last five and a half minutes of the third quarter would prove costly late in the game.
A quick basket by Hardies 50 seconds into the quarter led to a two baskets by Maryah Hunt. This narrowed an eight point lead to a two point game, 34-32 with six and a half minutes to play.
The game quickly turned into one of fast paced basketball. Rogers City's Logan Fleming scored two quick field goals to help stretch the Hurons' lead to 39-34. However, a three- pointer by Hunt once again brought Hillman within two, 39-37.
Hillman's luck dried up against the pinpoint shooting of Idalski, who hit a field goal and a three-pointer with less than three minutes to play. This stretched Rogers City's lead to 44-37 as Hiilman failed to score for three minutes.
A free throw and a field goal by Tchorzynski brought Hillman within six of the Hurons with 16 seconds left and Jones hit a trey with six seconds left to pull Hillman to within five as time expired.
Rogers City head coach David O'Bryant attributed the win to the growing comfort of his girls.
"The girls settled down a lot as the game went on and started hitting a lot of good shots. There were too many missed shots early in the game but by the fourth quarter we were up to 50% accuracy which is pretty solid," he said.
Hillman is now 0-2. The Tigers host Atlanta on Friday. Rogers City is now 1-1 and heads to Sault on Friday.
Rogers City's JV team won Tuesday Hillman, 43-28. The first quarter saw Rogers City ahead 13-8 while the end of the first half saw them up 23-14. Hillman fought the Hurons down to a 37-26 lead by the end of the third quarter .
Top scorers for Rogers City included Cassidy Purgiel with 20 points, Alexa Quaine with eight and Sarah Meredith with six. Hillman's top scorers included Kalen Tchorzynski with five, Hope Safford with four and Riley Appelgren with four.
Rogers City (48): B. Idalski 3-0-0-8; C. Streich 2-0-0-4; L. Fleming 4-2-5-10; R. Meredith 6-0-0-12; M. Hall 3-0-0-6; L. Claus 0-4-8-4; N. LaLonde 2-0-4-2.
Hillman (43): A. Olree 3-0-0-6; T. Crawford 1-0-0-2; A. Jones 2-3-4-8; M. Hunt 3-0-0-7; J. Tchorzynski 5-3-6-14; M. Hardies 2-2-4-6.