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March 6, 2013

Ferndale girls basketball team avenges recent loss with district title

By Mike Moore
C & G Sports Writer

» click to enlarge «
Amber Williams muscles up a shot earlier this year for Ferndale. The Eagles won a Class B district title with a 58-39 victory against Ferndale University.

FERNDALE — A week before facing Ferndale University in a Class B district championship, Eric Lloyd watched as his Ferndale High girls basketball team dropped a regular-season contest 44-40 to the Driving Eagles.

So, a week later, the remedy was a simple one.

“We had to get back to basics,” Lloyd said of the March 1 final. “We were pressing too much in the first game. This time, we played our half-court game. We were good in transition and rebounded the ball.”

It all worked, as the Eagles avenged the loss and earned their second straight district crown with a 58-39 victory.

“They wanted this,” Lloyd said of his girls. “They won (Oakland Activities Association Blue Division), and this was the next step. Like every other team alive, they wanted to keep playing.”

Ferndale advanced to the West Bloomfield High regional and faced Detroit University Prep after press time.

“It was a good game,” Lloyd added. “We did a lot of things right.”

Taryn Stephens led the team with 20 points; Micaela Ellis added 12 points and 12 assists. Taylor Hall added four blocks as Ferndale improved to 20-3.

Berkley bounced
After beating Oak Park High 40-17 in a Class A district opener, Berkley High had the luck of facing Lathrup Village Southfield-Lathrup in the semifinals.

Taking on one of the top team’s in the state proved to be a little too much in a 64-27 loss Feb. 27.

“That’s a very good, very athletic team that can penetrate or hit from the outside,” Berkley coach Jordan Gruppen said. “That was a good team we lost to.”

The Bears finished the season 12-10, a solid feat considering Lisa Wassenberg was the lone senior on the roster.

“Lisa was a great leader, and that was essential,” Gruppen said about the year. “They came together. Age never mattered. I mean, I don’t think people expected much out of us, but they put together a pretty strong year. And with the girls we could bring back, this is a team that can contend for a league title.”

You can reach C & G Sports Writer Mike Moore at mmoore@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1038. Twitter Follow Mike on Twitter.