After four straight losses, the Sturgis girls basketball team pieced together a fine performance at home Tuesday in a 51-35 victory over Battle Creek Central.
The Trojans held a 12-point lead at the break and coach Amie Burger encouraged her squad to focus on nothing else but the next eight minutes. The message was received loud and clear as Sturgis extended the lead to 14 heading into the fourth quarter to preserve the Southwestern Michigan Athletic Association East Division win.
Rachel Anderson scored 21 points and had 10 rebounds to lead Sturgis, which is now 2-7 overall and 2-4 in the SMAC. Nikki Nelson put up eight points and nine boards, and Marissa Parker, who took over at point guard again for an injured Morgan Pueschel, scored eight points and grabbed two steals.
“I guess today was probably our best team performance,” [Parker] did a good job for us tonight. We asked her to run the offense again after we [moved] her to a three guard. She did well; she hit some big shots for us also. It was a team effort. We were looking for each other and talking to each other on defense.”
Sturgis was 20-for-47 (42.6) percent from the field, with Anderson working at a 52.6-percent clip. The Trojans also outrebounded Battle Creek Central 32-21.
Harmony Groves and Gretchen Inman added four points apiece, Jessie Cline had three, Kayla Nichols finished with two and Maddy Mercer registered a point for Sturgis.
Ka-leah Ryan led the Bearcats (2-6, 1-3) with 23 points.
“We’ve taken that approach of one quarter at a time,” Burger said. “They responded. We’ve got goals for the team going down the stretch here and they know what they need to do to get there.”