Grosse Pointe North girls basketball knocks off Cousino to win regional title

By: Jason Carmel Davis | C&G Newspapers | Published March 8, 2018

 Grosse Pointe North won its first regional championship since 2010 after beating Warren Cousino March 8 at New Baltimore Anchor Bay.

Grosse Pointe North won its first regional championship since 2010 after beating Warren Cousino March 8 at New Baltimore Anchor Bay.

Photo by Jason Carmel Davis

Grosse Pointe North girls basketball knocks off Cousino to win regional title

 

ANCHOR BAY — Grosse Pointe North girls basketball coach Gary Bennett said junior forward Julia Ayrault does everything for the team.

 

That was no more evident than in the team’s 57-45 March 8 win over Warren Cousino in a Class A regional final.

 

Aryault scored 22 points in the win and had three blocks. She also set up teammates for a number of key baskets.

 

“(Aryault) helps the girls imagine what could be. She gives them confidence,” said Bennett, whose team advances to take on Detroit Martin Luther King in a state quarterfinal at 5 p.m. March 13 at Southfield A&T.

 

“She loves her teammates; everybody loves everybody. Everybody plays their role — even if it’s minor. That makes a difference in games like this,” the coach added.

 

The regional title is the first for North (19-5) since 2010. Cousino (16-8) was seeking a third straight regional crown.

 

“This is awesome. We haven’t made it this far in a long time, so it’s really cool,” Ayrault said.

 

North led tip to buzzer. The 12-point advantage at the end was the largest of the game.

 

Cousino, which won a Class A state title in 2016, cut the Norsemen lead to two points four times in the second half but couldn’t get over the hump.

 

“We has some new players in bigger spots,” Patriots coach Mike Lee said. “We had a couple girls who tried to do too much. The moment was too big for some of them. (Ayrault) got loose early and had a really good game. North is a good team.”

 

North had a counter for every Cousino run.

 

The teams traded haymakers for much of the third quarter. A 5-0 Norsemen spurt was followed by a 7-0 Patriots run at the start. The teams then traded baskets before a 5-0 North run helped the team extend its lead to 30-24 halfway through the third. A 5-0 Patriots run made it 30-29 North, but the Norsemen closed the third on an 8-1 run.

 

“We turned the ball over too much and didn’t always find the open man, but we made some timely shots,” Bennett said. “We’ve been in games where we’ve lost big leads but pulled out wins. I think that helps in situations like this.”

 

Junior guard Evelyn Zacharias scored 12 points for North in the win, including eight in the third quarter.

 

Junior wing Kate McArthur led Cousino with 21 points — 13 in the third.

 

“McArthur has a great game,” Ayrault said. “She got loose in the third. We knew about 88 percent of their scoring came from three people so we tried to key on them.”

 

Cousino loses four players to graduation, including starting guard Kennedy Gasowski. The Patriots have eight players eligible to return, including four starters.

 

“It’s sad to have the run end for the seniors who were a part of that state title team,” Lee said. “This game should do a lot for our sophomores. It’s up to some new girls to step up.”