At least on the court, the holiday break hasn’t been kind to the Sturgis girls basketball team, which lost 41-39 to Bronson Saturday in a A&K Holiday Tournament consolation game at home.
Following a difficult 24 hours that began with Friday’s 42-37 loss to Kalamazoo Christian, first-year Trojans coach Amie Burger believes her team is on the brink of turning a corner despite a 1-6 record. Sooner than later, however, Sturgis needs to see tangible proof.
“It’s always better when you’re getting wins,” Burger said. “We should have a more healthy [roster] when we come back. Hopefully another week in between games we’ll be healthy and start the new year off with a win.
“They’re doing good things at good times, they just haven’t put it all together yet. We’re still looking to put four quarters together.”
Rachel Anderson led the Trojans with 19 points, four rebounds, four steals and four blocks. Marissa Parker added seven points, Morgan Pueschel had six points, three assists and four steals, Gretchen Inman notched five points and a pair of steals, and Jessie Cline had two points.
The game was tied at 31-31 with 5:34 to play when Bronson started a 5-0 run that proved to be enough of a cushion. Inman scored a pair of baskets to cut the deficit to 37-36 with 2:31 to go, but Bronson was pure on a pair of free throws to regain a three-point advantage.
Anderson scored with 59 seconds left to make it a 39-38 game, but the Vikings answered immediately. With just five seconds on the clock and down 41-38, Pueschel made a free throw and was instructed to miss the second. The ball bounced of a Bronson player and out of bounds, giving the Trojans an opportunity to tie the game or take the lead.
Pueschel got a jumper off that wouldn’t go and Groves missed a desperation attempt before the horn.
“We didn’t really get a good shot off; we didn’t get what we were looking for,” Burger said. “We had a chance at the end, but we didn’t do the little things throughout the game to not put us in that situation.”
Sturgis had a 21-16 lead at intermission even though it was outscored 8-2 in the second quarter. The Trojans finished 14-for-33 shooting from the field, was 3-for-10 from deep and 8-for-13 at the foul line. Bronson shot 60 percent (15-for-25) for the game and 10-for-16 at the stripe.
“We’re not feeding the inside right now,” Burger explained. “We had Gretchen underneath and we didn’t get it to her. That’s something we’ve got to keep working on.”
Bronson moved to 3-2 overall.