The Battle Creek Enquirer breaks down the top city boys and girls basketball games of the week with our Prep Gameday Scouting Reports:
BC Central (2-2)
Next: Chuck Turner Classic, Monday/Tuesday
Scouting Report: Battle Creek Central has already had a tough early schedule and it will just get harder as the Bearcats face perennial state powers Ann Arbor Huron and Muskegon Heights Academy in the annual Chuck Turner Classic at the BCC Field House next week. Ann Arbor Huron has only played once so far this year, winning this week. Muskegon Heights has also only played once, beating Baldwin.
HARPER CREEK (2-1)
Next: vs. Charlotte, today; at Portage Central, Jan. 5
Scouting Report: Charlotte opened the season with two wins before losing this week for the first time, just like Harper Creek. The two teams are among the early contenders for the Interstate 8, so a home league game early will be key for the Beavers.
Next: vs. Plainwell, Jan. 5
Scouting Report: Lakeview will be off until after the holidays, looking to bounce back from an early 0-3 start. The Spartans fell to Portage Northern, 62-47, on Tuesday..
Next: vs. Marshall, today; at Otsego, Jan. 5
Scouting Report: Pennfield faces Marshall in a key early-season Interstate 8 Conference game as both teams hope to contend for spots in the top half of the league last year. The Panthers allowed a big league to slip away in a loss to Homer earlier this week. Marshall is coming off a 5-OT win over Portland with Jacob Brubaker scoring 34 points.
ST. PHILIP (2-1)
Next: vs. Colon (late Thursday); vs. Union City, Dec. 30
Scouting Report: St. Philip has strung two impressive wins together after opening the season with a win. The Tigers were in action again late Thursday against Colon.
BC Central (0-5)
Next: at Hastings (late Thursday); vs. Sexton, Jan. 4
Scouting Report: Battle Creek Central is off to a slow start, but the Bearcats knew that might be the case. BCC has two would-be starters on the sidelines until January due to injuries and/or transfer rules.
HARPER CREEK (1-2)
Next: vs. Charlotte, today; vs. Portage Central, Jan. 5
Scouting Report: With Harper Creek hosting I-8 rival Charlotte, both teams haven’t started the season as they would like. Beavers are hoping to get back to .500 mark while facing an Orioles team that has lost three in a row.
Next: at Plainwell, Jan. 5
Scouting Report: Lakeview is already off for the holidays in terms of the girls basketball schedule, which is too bad because the Spartans had a lot of momentum with a 4-1 start to the year.
Next: vs. Marshall, today; vs. Otsego, Jan. 5
Scouting Report: If Pennfield wants to climb the ranks of the Interstate 8, it will have to be able to knock off teams like defending champ Marshall. This is a key early-season game for both teams as the Redhawks come in at 3-1.
ST. PHILIP (2-2)
Next: at Colon, today; vs. Union City, Dec. 30
Scouting Report: St. Philip has bounced back after a tough early-season schedule and has climbed back to .500 with two straight wins. Facing Colon, the Tigers have an opportunity for a key division victory.
The top boys and girls basketball performances for the week from the five city schools in Battle Creek:
Battle Creek Central
Cyntell Williams helped the Bearcats during its busy early schedule, leading the way in scoring in back-to-back games Monday and Tuesday. Williams had 16 points in a win over Harper Creek, then had 14 in a loss to Stevensville-Lakeshore.
Ben Swagler has helped lead the young Tigers in the early going as he had 21 points and four rebounds in a 51-43 win over Hillsdale Academy, before coming back to get 18 points, including four 3-pointers, and four assists in a win over Litchfield.
Jessalyn Genier helped Lakeview to two wins, getting 13 points and 12 rebounds in a victory over Portage Northern, before adding 21 points and 12 rebounds in an overtime victory over Mattawan, 54-50..
St. Philip rolled to a couple wins over the last week with Nina Winkler leading the way as she had 14 points, six steals and five rebounds in a one-sided win over Litchfield, while also adding eight points in a win over Hillsdale Academy.