Lady Warriors’ season ends with loss in Sweet 16
Coming off a 48-42 victory over Novi in the regional semi-final, Western ran into a stifling defense that limited the offense to just 14 points.
Kailee Ford scored early to give Western a 2-0 lead. Senior Alyssa Murray’s short jumper in the lane tied the score at 4-4 with 2:02 left in the opening quarter. Mercy hit two free throws late for a 5-4 lead after one quarter.
It was an uphill battle the rest of the way. Janara Flowers’ jumper cut Mercy’s lead to 9-8 with 6:36 left in the first half. Ford’s two free throws cut the deficit to 12- 10. That was as close as the battling Lady Warriors would get as Mercy led 20-10 at half-time.
Mercy’s half-court trap defense keyed a 12-2 run in the third to break the game open as the Lady Marlins led 32-12 at the end of the third. Western kept battling in the final quarter before falling to Mercy, 35-14.
“Yes, it’s disappointing,” said Western Coach Skip Stevenson. “Would I like a better result? Absolutely. The whole body of work was amazing. Twenty wins, won the KLAA North, won the district and made the regional finals. I’m very proud. Great season! Great group of kids that took us all on a great ride.”
The Lady Warriors’ season was highlighted by setting a school record with 20 victories, which included the first-ever KLAA North Division championship in school history. They also won their first MHSAA District championship since 1988 with a victory over Walled Lake Northern.
The 48-42 semi-final regional win over Novi on Tuesday was also the first regional victory since 1983. Western also won back-to-back Walled Lake City Championships.