Blue Devils find extra gear to hold off Alpena

Courtesy Photo Alpena’s Avery Dubey prepares to shoot while seperating herself from Sault Ste. Marie defenders during a basketball game on Monday at Alpena High School.

ALPENA — The Alpena High girls basketball team never stopped battling on Monday.

Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Sault Ste. Marie found a way to pull away at key times, including late in the fourth quarter on the way to a 57-48 win.

Alpena (2-7) cut Sault’s lead to six several times during the second half. The last time came with less than four minutes left after a basket from Faith Dragiewicz, who went coast-to-coast for a score to make it 49-43.

From there momentum swung firmly back to the Blue Devils, who finished the game on an 8-5 swing.

Reese Wisniewski led Alpena with 18 points and Avery Dubey added 13.

Sault led 29-22 at halftime and opened the second half on a 7-3 run, pushing its lead as high as 11.

But the Wildcats, who lost to Sault by 22 last month, refused to go away quietly.

Wisniewski drove in for a score with 3:42 left and drilled a three-pointer a short time later, cutting Sault’s lead to six. After both teams traded triples, Dragiewicz scored near the end of the quarter to make it 42-35.

Early fourth quarter buckets from Wisniewski got Alpena to within six, but the Blue Devils seemed to always have an answer and quickly rebuild a double-digit lead.

Sault finished with a balanced offensive performance led by Laura Innerenber’s 18 points. Danica Bergeron added 15 points and Mackenzie Bell chipped in with 13 points.

Both teams traded baskets in a back-and-forth first quarter that saw four ties. Wisniewski converted a steal into a layup late in the period to tie the game at 12, but a triple just before the buzzer gave the Blue Devils a 15-12 lead.

The Blue Devils took the game over in the second quarter, scoring 12 unanswered points to push their lead as high as 15. Alpena caught fire late in the period, finishing the last several minutes on a 10-2 tear that saw Dubey, Wisniewski, Dragiewicz and Reagan Fitzpatrick all in on the scoring.

Alpena plays at Traverse City West on Friday in a Big North Conference contest. Alpena is 0-2 in conference play so far this season.

Alpena’s JV team lost to Sault 34-27 and was led by Natalie Maychen, who had nine points.


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