By David Tomczak
Local Sports Journal
Muskegon Catholic Central girls basketball coach Erich Adams feels his team is hitting its stride right now.
After the the Class D district tournament MCC just had, it would be hard to argue.
The Crusaders held Fremont Providence Christian scoreless in the second and third quarters and rolled to a 55-13 win to capture the Class D district title at home Friday.
“I think we began to hit our stride last Friday at Western Michigan Christian,” Adams said. “But right now what we have to do is just take one game at a time.”
The Crusaders advance to regional action at Hudsonville Freedom Christian Tuesday at 5:30 against Fulton. Fulton advanced with a 58-54, triple overtime win over Portland St. Patrick’s.
It has been an impressive district run for Muskegon Catholic so far, scoring more points in its first round game (73) than it has given up in all three games played (58).
After finishing the first quarter with a 22-9 lead, MCC would outscore the Storm 28-0 heading into the fourth.
“We knew going in that it was going to be tough,” Providence Christian coach Carley DeKryger said. “They have phenominal athletes and Erich is a great coach, I have nothing but respect for their program.”
The Crusaders’ Tootie Thompson and Katherine Salisz had eight points apiece in the first quarter, as MCC was able to attack the Storm defense inside and out.
“We moved the ball really well and that is something we do on a regular basis,” Adams said. “This team plays really well together and when they do that, there’s not much I have to do.”
Catholic Central also helped itself at the line, hitting 15-of-21 attempts, while Providence finished the game 2-of-5.
Thompson led nine MCC players in scoring with 12 points, Natalie Bertolone added 11 points, Salisz finished with 10 points and four assists and Momo Neal and Toya Briggs had four steals each.
The Crusaders bench outscored the Storm’s bench, 13-2, led by Gabrielle Thelen’s seven points.
“We don’t have any starters,” Adams said. “Just 12 really good players.”
Bri DeKryger scored eight points and grabbed five rebounds to lead Providence Christian.
MUSK. CATHOLIC CENTRAL 55, PROV. CHRISTIAN 13
Prov. Christian 9 0 0 4 – 13
Catholic Central 22 18 10 5 – 55
Bri DeKryger 3 2-4 8, Becca Wolffis 1 0-0 3, Dani Visser 1 0-1 2. Totals 5 2-5 13.
Katherine Salisz 5 0-0 10, Toya Briggs 2 2-2 7, Tootie Thompson 4 2-2 12, Marissa Mastella 1 0-0 2, Natalie Bertolone 3 5-10 9, Gabrielle Thelen 2 2-3 7, Haleigh Locke 0 2-2 2, Momo Neal 1 0-0 2, Kendall Wickstrom 0 2-2 2. Totals 18 15-21 55.
3-pointers – Wolffis, Briggs, Thompson 2, Thelen. Total fouls – Providence Christian 14, MCC 12.