Rachel Nelson had a team-high 11 points and her shot at the buzzer lifted Howell to a 29-28 win over Lakeland Tuesday in the first round of the Lakes Conference tournament.
Lakeland missed a free throw with under 10 seconds remaining to give the Highlanders a chance.
“We didn’t call a timeout,” Howell interim coach Lisa Pawelski said. “We dribbled the ball up and got it into Rachel’s hands. She was open and actually kind of leaning and off-balance and it was nothing but net.”
The Highlanders (11-6) will play at Brighton, a 51-22 winner over Walled Lake Northern, in Thursday’s conference semifinal game.
Erin Honkala had six points and five rebounds and Leah Weslock also added six points for Howell, which held Lakeland to just two third-quarter points.
Brighton 51, Walled Lake Northern 22
BRIGHTON – The Bulldogs (14-3) put the game out of reach with a 14-2 run in the second quarter.
“We came out a little sluggish,” Brighton coach Paul Ash said. “We corrected things and we had some good balance. It’s good when a lot of kids are scoring and we got some very good minutes from our reserves.”
Alex Forster had 12 points and Cori Crocker had 10 points and 10 rebounds for Brighton.
Walled Lake Central 45, Pinckney 36
PINCKNEY – The Pirates fell to Walled Lake Central on Tuesday night despite 27 combined points from Shannon Dingman and Shay Herbert.
Dingman, the Pirates only senior, posted 14 points on the night while Herbert contributed 13.
“They hit a lot of big shots and we didn’t,” Pinckney coach Jarrett Cogswell said.
Lansing Waverly 57, Howell 52
LANSING – The Highlanders (8-8) came out hot but couldn’t hold on to a 15-point lead in the second half.
“(Waverly) came out with tons of energy and we struggled to rebound against them (in the second),” Howell coach Nick Simon said,
Deajay Klett led Howell with 20 points.