RICHLAND — Gull Lake’s Friday night contest against the Lakeview Spartans featured loose play, 3-pointers and late-game drama.
In a Southwest Michigan Athletic Conference matchup at Gull Lake High School that saw six lead changes, it was the Blue Devils creating a kick-out 3-pointer with 3:35 left in the fourth quarter on guard Jack Millmier bucket – en route to a 64-52 victory.
“I thought they played with a lot of confidence,” Blue Devils’ coach Gary Sprague said. “We had guys who wanted the ball at the end. Defensive rebounding was really good for us toward the second half, especially in the fourth quarter. They (Gull Lake) didn’t give them many second chances. Our guards… wanted the ball at the end; they didn’t care.”
Looking ahead, Lakeview (6-12) has now split its last eight contests and will visit Battle Creek Central on Tuesday for a chance at redemption, while Gull Lake advances to 2-15 on the season with the victory.
Lakeview started three seniors on the night and opened with 9-0 run in the game’s first four minutes. Guard C.J. Foster had four points in the first quarter to help give the Spartans an early 15-10 lead at quarter’s end.
More of the same dominant guard play from the Spartans’ Foster and Gavin Homer was featured in the second quarter. Behind the 5-foot-7 Foster’s eight points and the 5-foot-8 Homer’s five points, the Spartans owned a 25-21 lead going into half.
The second half, however, was a different story.
“I don’t know. I thought we started out well,” said Lakeview coach Steve Wichmann. “I thought our offense was working really well, sharing the ball. But then we let them right back into the game. They just worked harder than us. It is going to have to be a quick turnaround. … We have to rebound quickly.”
The Blue Devils opened the scoring up this time, as the one-time Lakeview lead had vanished. With 4:12 left in the third quarter, Gull Lake guard Jarrett Miller hit a crucial 3-pointer to give the Blue Devils a 28-27 advantage. A few minutes later and it was Lakeview staging a comeback to make the score even at the end of the third, 36-36.
In the fourth quarter, Gull Lake continued its hot shooting as Millmier drained three 3-pointers to help his team pull away from the Spartans late. He finished 7-of-13 shooting with a game-high 19 points. The 64-point total was the most points scored by Gull Lake all season.
For Lakeview, Foster led the team with 16 points on 6-of-15 shooting. Forward Jared Fisk had 14 points and seven rebounds.