The girls basketball season is heading into holiday break with a few teams picking up steam.
Marysville, our No. 1 team in the season’s first girls basketball poll, ended their break with an impressive 50-40 victory against Port Huron Northern in the Annual Holiday Girls Basketball Tournament.
What really stood out was how well-balanced the Vikings were in the win. Yes, they have quality stars like Payton Husson and Devan Valko that combined for 66 points over the two-day tourney, but they have so many more solid players.
Junior guards Kiara Kelley and Mya Rhodes each spark the Vikings with energy and good court vision. Shannon Curley can heat up her team like she’s coming out of a microwave with her timely 3-pointers. Lydia Sawdon has also proven herself as one of the area’s top passers.
“There were quite a few girls who made plays for us,” Vikings head coach Ryan Rathje said. “Payton was aggressive early and got us off to a good start. Devan just had a great all-around game, and she had a lot of collisions but kept playing … a lot of girls stepped up, Lydia had a big 3-point shot and Kiara had a nice drive to the basket late, so all away around I was proud of our girls.”
Now Northern did Marysville previously this season, topping the Vikings 62-43 on opening night on Dec. 4. However, Northern’s offense seems to be sputtering a little bit more than head coach Mark Dickinson would like as they head into break.
“The last two days we were out of sync on offense,” Dickinson said. “Defensively we played good enough to win (against Marysville) … we’re not running our sets and we’re not making free throws, and that’s the biggest thing. We need our confidence.”
Also heading into break on a high note is Marine City, who will celebrate Christmas as a 4-0 team with wins over Croswell-Lexington and Yale. Brown City also remains unbeaten heading into break after topping Bad Axe 43-39 last week.
Times Herald Girls Basketball Poll
2. Port Huron Northern
3. Marine City
5. Brown City
6. Port Huron
9. St. Clair