LAINGSBURG – Jessica Stoskopf and the Bath girls basketball team didn’t forget.
The Bees remembered falling just short in an earlier key CMAC matchup against rival Laingsburg.
And they made sure it didn’t happen again Tuesday.
Tessa Hosford and Stoskopf led a balanced attack as Bath took a major step toward a CMAC title with a 53-34 victory over Class C No. 4-ranked Laingsburg.
“It was a goal to come out and beat them,” Hosford said. “We always worked hard to be the better team and it really paid off tonight.”
TUESDAY NIGHT HOOPS:
Hosford had 15 points, Stoskopf scored 12 points and Bailey Holtham added nine points off the bench while helping the Bees (14-2, 12-1 CMAC) win their ninth straight since a 28-26 loss to Laingsburg on Jan. 6.
“We were playing super hard and really fast,” Stoskopf said. “Last time they slowed us down, but this time we pushed the tempo and really went after them.”
Tuesday’s win gave the Bees a full game lead in the loss column over Laingsburg (14-2, 10-2) and Pewamo-Westphalia with three CMAC contests left.
“We honestly don’t talk about it very much,” Bath coach Chris Rypstra said of a chance for a second straight league title. “We know this is a big game and where it matters in terms of league standings, but it’s one game at a time.
“There’s still a lot of work to be done. Our league is one of the best leagues in the state of Michigan, especially small schools. We’ve got a lot to still take care of before we can start thinking about anything postseason or trophies.”
Bath took the lead for good in the middle stages of the opening quarter and took control during a dominant third quarter where it outscored the Wolfpack 17-5.
Sophie Wilsey had 11 points to lead Laingsburg, which couldn’t overcome some recent illnesses and the loss of a starter last week to an injury while having its seven-game win streak halted.
“It is what it is, and there’s no excuses,” Laingsburg coach Doug Hurst said. “Bath played really well. They deserved to win the game. We had illnesses and we just couldn’t find a way to overcome them.
“I just couldn’t find that key tonight to find a way to get them going. It just wasn’t our night, it was as simple as that. It was a combination of different reasons. Bath came in here tonight ready to play and they played really well.”
Contact Brian Calloway at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @brian_calloway.