2008-03-13 / Sports

Cedarville Girls Complete Season 24-2; Put Mark in School's History Book

By David Latva

The Cedarville Trojans after their first quarterfinal win in school history with a victory over North Dickinson Tuesday, March 4. Team members include (front, from left) Jillian Collins, Rachelle Hansen, Jessie Duncan, Ashley Sweeney, Stephanie Leach, Alexis Barr; (back) Manager Mary Beth Paquin, Head Coach Sonja Duncan, Caitlin Wright, Billie McLeod, Katie Bowlby, Brittany Kelley, Brittany Lee, Kacie Simpson, Manager Savannah Madigan, and Assistant Coach Tony Hakola. The Cedarville Trojans after their first quarterfinal win in school history with a victory over North Dickinson Tuesday, March 4. Team members include (front, from left) Jillian Collins, Rachelle Hansen, Jessie Duncan, Ashley Sweeney, Stephanie Leach, Alexis Barr; (back) Manager Mary Beth Paquin, Head Coach Sonja Duncan, Caitlin Wright, Billie McLeod, Katie Bowlby, Brittany Kelley, Brittany Lee, Kacie Simpson, Manager Savannah Madigan, and Assistant Coach Tony Hakola. The Cedarville Trojans girls basketball team's outstanding 24-2 season came to an end with a 34- 26 loss to Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart during the Class D state semifinals Thursday, March 6.

Although the team was only one victory away from advancing to the title game, this year was successful as Coach Sonja Duncan's squad won the Eastern Upper Peninsula Conference with a perfect 8-0 mark and established school records with a quarterfinal win and the most victories during the 2007-08 campaign.

"The girls played their hearts out, but the shots just wouldn't fall," said Coach Sonja Duncan. "Sacred Heart scored 22 points inside the paint (free throw line), while we scored just six points.

"This was a great year," added Coach Duncan, "but the girls are looking forward to next season."

The low-scoring contest between the Trojans, champions of the Eastern Upper Peninsula Conference, and the Irish, co-champions of the Mid-State Activities Conference, came down to fourth quarter play, and free throws.

Cedarville held a 25-23 scoring edge after three quarters before Kelsey DeNoyelles, the Irish's top scorer with 15 points, tied the game at 25 during the first two minutes of the period.

Billie McLeod made one of two free throws at the 4:30 mark to give the Trojans a 26-25 lead, but the Irish defense took over, shutting out the Trojans from there to clinch the victory.

Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart took the lead for good with a 27-26 score at 3:45 and increased its lead to 29-26 with 3:12 left in the game. Cedarville was forced to foul and DeNoyelles converted five of six free throws during final minute of play.

The Irish opened the game with a 7-0 lead at 4:57 before Jessie Duncan, who led the Trojans with 12 points, drained a triple at 4:45 to spark an offensive run. Ashley Sweeney scored four and Caitlin Wright and Jillian Collins contributed two to tie the game at 11- 11 after the first quarter.

The Irish held a 7-6 scoring edge in the second quarter for a 18- 17 halftime lead.

In the fourth quarter, Duncan scored six, and Katie Bowlby and Collins each made one free throw as the Trojans outscored Sacred Heart 8-5 to take a 25-23 lead into the final eight minutes.

This was the final game for seniors Caitlin Wright and Katie Bowlby, who were a huge part of the Trojans success.

Cedarville scored 10 field goals, one triple, and made five of 10 from the free throw line. Sacred Heart made 13 field goals, one triple, and made seven of 12 free throws.

Trojans statistics: Jessie Duncan, 12 points; Ashley Sweeney, six points; Jillian Collins, three points; Billie McLeod, Caitlin Wright, two points; Katie Bowlby, one point.

Irish statistics: Kelsey De- Noyelles, 15 points; Elizabeth Ebright, eight points; Maureen Riley, five points; Chelsea Mills, four points; Emily Thering, two points.

Reflection of the Trojans

2007-08 Season

Coach Duncan, in her second year at her alma mater, was armed with a strong, but young nucleus of players this year, when the season began in November. Her squad included two seniors, Caitlin Wright and Katie Bowlby; six juniors, Jessie Duncan, Billie Mc- Leod, Ashley Sweeney, Rachelle Hansen, Kacie Simpson, and Brittany Kelley, and one sophomore, Jillian Collins.

Coach Duncan lost the services of Kacie Simpson before the season started, owing to knee surgery.

The Trojans won the Eastern Upper Peninsula Conference after posting a perfect 8-0 record while averaging 74.0 points per game and allowing 56.6 points. Cedarville was 11-1 in non-conference games, suffering its lone loss to St. Ignace 60-55 early in the season. The Trojans took revenge, defeating the Saints 59-54 during their second match-up.

The Trojans opened post-season play at DeTour with victories over theRaiders 73-42 and defeated Brimley 75-52 for the district title.

Cedarville won its fourth regional crown in school history with wins over Gaylord St. Mary 62-32 and Superior Central 59-43 for the championship at Sault Ste. Marie.

The Trojans captured the regional title in 1991, 1992, and 1998.

Cedarville was riding high going into the state finals at Eastern Michigan University's Convocation Center, averaging more than 66 points per game and allowing 45 points, but Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart's defense outdid Cedarville's in the lowscoring semifinals game, allowing the Trojans to score only 26 points for the game.

The Trojans are 42-8 overall over the past two seasons.

Cedarville will graduate players Caitlin Wright and Katie Bowlby, although nine players who were on the roster at the semifinals will return, including Jessie Duncan, Billie McLeod, Ashley Sweeney, Jillian Collins, Rachelle Hansen, Kacie Simpson, Stephanie Leach, Brittany Kelley, and Brittany Lee.

Return to top


Click here for digital edition
2008-03-13 digital edition