By: Nate Dreyer
It’s time for another Friday night and weekend of action on Michigan Sports Radio, and again we are able to present a full weekend worth of big-time games across West Michigan, and beyond.
D1 vs. D2 Champs At Van Noord
Saturday, MSR is excited to present live coverage from Van Noord Arena at Calvin University, as Rockford and Lansing Catholic meet in the marquee matchup of the Calvin Showcase for girls basketball in a 7:00 pm tip.
Brad Wilson’s Rockford Rams recently had a 33-game winning streak snapped by East Kentwood and are looking for a statement win to jump start another win streak, and another title run. Lansing Catholic, for coach Kacee Reed won 11-straight games to close last year’s championship run in D2 and currently stand at 8-2 overall in the 2023-24 campaign.
The Cougars are led by a wealth of terrific guard play matched up with size up front, and athleticism across their lineup. Up front, they feature a pair of starting bigs in 6’0 Senior Leah Richards and 6’3 Freshman Kyra Vukovic to match a trio of experienced senior guards that lead their two-way attack. On their own end of the floor, Lansing Catholic has locked down defensively during their current 6-game win streak, allowing 34-or-less in all contests during the stretch.
Rockford returns many key contributors from last season’s championship-winning squad, and yet still features a young squad learning on the fly (while winning) and set up for success going forward. Grace Lyons helps run the offense as a senior multi-year starter at SG alongside some young (yet championship-experienced) backcourt and wing running mates in sophomore Siena Wolfe and junior Anna Wypych – who have each seen starting minutes since their freshman seasons.
Two rosters filled with championship mettle, looking to jumpstart championship-defending runs, tune in for the 6:00 tip Saturday night, from one of the best venues for basketball in Michigan!
Border War Double Header at Hudsonville
Hudsonville plays host Friday night as the beautiful new Fieldhouse pays host to one of the better ‘border-war’ rivalries in west Michigan in a pair of critical OK-Red clashes.
The boys game opens our video coverage at 5:50pm (6:00 tip), as Grandville is in town to take on the Eagles. Both teams are riding two-game win streaks and getting back on track after dropping games to Rockford (Grandville also dropped an E.K. game, that Hudsonville will be making up later due to weather cancellation).
The Eagles offense is on a different level right now, putting up 93 in their win over West Ottawa and 80 against Jenison Tuesday. On the other side of the floor, Grandville’s defense has been getting back to some of the great lock-down play we’ve seen out of the Bulldogs under coach Desmond Young. They’ve allowed sub-50 in their last two wins over Caledonia and Grand Haven teams that have each shown an ability to run and score this year, and allowed 51 to East Kentwood in a loss the game before – EK had been scoring nearly 15 PPG more on average this season than the ‘Dawgs allowed.
There are great matchups across the floor in this one, including underclassmen guards dueling: Hudsonville sophomore Jovaan Daniels vs. Grandville freshman Carter Wade, standout future DII stars: Hudsonville’s Brayden Szamrej (Tiffin) & Grandville’s Cam Regnerus (GVSU), & plenty more great battles on the wings and across the floor.
Both teams in the girls contest to follow are looking to jump start a mid-season stretch, a young Eagles team rebuilding off a state title in the 2021 season were able to win last time out vs. Jenison to snap a 2-game slide before that. While Grandville, with first-year head coach Mike VanHekken watched their offense sputter down the stretch to a loaded Grand Haven team 52-26 in the last contest. We’ll see if the Bulldogs can break a long winning streak by the Eagles girls in this rivalry.
Coopersville/West Catholic OK-Blue Clash
Coopersville travels to West Catholic Friday night, and the Broncos Radio crew on MSR will be there for DH coverage. Starting in the boys contest as the Broncos look to remain in the solo top spot in the ‘Blue’ against a 5-7 WC squad that have won two-in-a-row against Spring Lake and Fruitport and are looking to carry that momentum forward.
As always, watch for the Broncos highly efficient two-way attack with a shifting zone defense that clogs up opponent offense on their own and and a deliberate ‘dribble drive’ offensive approach that finds open and efficient shots for the likes of their standout senior wing Porter Kretschman and their big man, future Ohio State Buckeye football OL, Gabe VanSickle.
The girls game to follow features a Falcons team looking to get back to a third-straight state championship game, and break over the hump in 2024. Their lone loss came to state’s elite Rockford at the Cornerstone Holiday Tournament and they’ve been rolling since with six-straight wins and the top spot in the O-K Blue. Coopersville stands at 6-6 on the season for Mike Marshall and 4-2 in the Blue – This could be a huge chance for the Broncos girls to make a massive statement and shake up the conference standings, if they can pull the upset.
Central Montcalm, Tri-Country & More
We’ve got DH coverage with both our Tri-County and Central Montcalm crews as well.
Tri-County and Lakeview each look to turn around the ship on the boys side and the Viking girls look to cme away with the upset on their home floor. Coverage begins at 5:45, with girls tip-off at 6:00 and boys to follow.
Central Montcalm plays host to Chippewa Hills, as the Hornets girls look to snap a 5-game losing streak against a Chippewa Hills team that have now dropped their last nine. The C.M. boys also find themselves looking to end a five game losing skid, and will look to do so against a C.H. team looking to find similar traction currently sitting at 2-9.
It’s another loaded Friday (and Saturday) on MSR, so be sure to tune in! And keep an eye out for results, standings, and schedules all right here on MichiganSportsRadio.com!