The OK Gold title lead was up for grabs tonight as the Wolves of Wyoming High School hosted the Eagles from Grand Rapids Christian. The stage was set for the two best teams in the confrence on Hall of Fame night in Wyoming. The Wyoming Hall of Fame has 6 new members including Steve Newman, Troy Mast, Mike Sturm, Dana Peuler Conklin, Oogie Lamar, as well as Michigan Sports Radios’ own Crysta Paganelli’s aunt, Christy Jaklinski Paganelli.
The game began as the near capacity crowd had expected, as both teams traded the lead several times in the first quarter. The Wolves began to pull away due in part to some long range sharp shooting by Payton Harley. He would finish the first quarter 3 of 3 from beyond the long line as well as one from just inside the line giving him 11 points in first 8 minuets. The Wolves stingey full court defense was successful in creating a few timely turnovers of which the Thom Vander Klay coached squad capitalized. The Wolves led 23-12 after the first quarter and took a 37-25 lead into the locker room at the half.
Coach Mark Warners made adjustments during the intermission that proved to be successful in the third quarter and the Eagles were able to trim the Wolves lead to just 8 with 8 minuets to play 50-42. Senior Setric Millner Jr. and classmate Tre Vallar showed the young Eagles just what Senior leadership looks like scoring nearly half of each of their total points in the third frame. The Eagles were now set to make a final frame push however foul trouble and the tenatious defense of the Wolves would prove too much to overcome.
The Wolves once again seperated themselves from the Eagles in the final 8 minuets thanks to points created from turnovers. The first half the Wolves played defense the entire length of the floor. In the second half Coach VK “called off the dogs” and orchistrated a half court trap that proved crucial to the final score of 67-52 in favor of the Wolves.
Leading the scoring for the Eagles was Millner Jr. with 15 points, Valler dropped in 14, Sophmore EJ Victory and Freshman Kobe Bufkin each had 5 points and six other Eagles combined for the remaning 13 points.
The Wolves were led by Sophmore Menalito Mc Gee who led all scorers with 18, Sr. Jo’vaun Jones (Core Power Preformance Player of the Game) was right behind him with 17, while his classmates Payton Harley and Melvin Frazier had 15 and 14 respectively and Baron Bykerk added 3.
The win moves the Wolves to 14-3 over all and 10-1 in the OK Gold with just one conference game left in the regular season, next week agianst East. For the Eagles, the loss moves their record to 10-6 over all and 8-2 in the OK Gold. Two OK Gold opponents await the eagles, East Grand Rapids and Forest Hills Eastern, prior to two epic post season warm up games agianst Godwin Heights and Kalamazoo Central. These two teams could very easily find themselves meeting for the third time this season as they are on oppsite sides of the MHSAA Class A District 6. If they do meet in the district finals on March 9th in Caledonia, you’ll want to arrive early to get a good seat. March is just arround the corner, and the Breslin Center is calling. Who will answer, will be an exciting question to answer.