A traditionally powerful St. Joseph girls basketball team hasn’t had the kind of season it’s used to, but the Bears still gave host Three Rivers all it could handle Monday.
But few teams can deal with the Wildcats tandem of Teagan Reeves and Linsey Masnari, which willed the program to a 55-47 victory in a nonconference contest to boost Three Rivers’ record to 11-1.
Teagan Reeves hurt the Bears with 33 points, 19 rebounds and 10 blocks, including a 4-of-6 effort from 3-point land.
After foul trouble forced her to the bench for several minutes in the fourth quarter, Linsey Masnari knocked down 5-of-6 free throws in the final minute en route to 14 points and five boards.
“We jumped out and got up by eight points in the first quarter and could never really get a comfortable lead,” Three Rivers coach Jason Bingaman said. “We’d get a little run and then make some mistakes, and St. Joe would make us pay and get right back into the game. That’s how it was basically the whole night.”
The Bears (3-9) boast several 20-win seasons in recent years and Bingaman explained that even a sub-.500 squad is a dangerous one when it is used to battling on a weekly basis in the Southwestern Michigan Athletic Conference.
“Night after night they’re playing against some really good teams,” he said. “They’ve been losing to some pretty good ball clubs. You have to try to explain to your girls that there are still little things you have to do correctly — things that might come easy for us when we play in our league. We were able to find ways to make plays when we needed to in a couple spots in the game to eliminate their runs.”
Three Rivers shot 31 percent from the field, and 59 percent (13-of-22) from the foul line. Cory Sanders scored five points and had three assists for the Wildcats, and Alexis Herbert added three points and five assists.
Randi Dortch produced 18 points to lead St. Joseph (3-9, 3-4). Mya Robinson scored nine points and Robyn Priebe and Maddy Paul each finished with six for the Bears.
Three Rivers heads to Paw Paw (9-4, 5-2) Tuesday night for a Wolverine Conference crossover game.
“It’s a good two nights to kind of gauge where we’re at,” Bingaman said.