St. Clair ShoresJanuary 29, 2014
Lake Shore girls rolling through the regular season
By Jason Carmel Davis
C & G Sports Writer
ST. CLAIR SHORES — Losing out on a division title last season has served as a strong motivating factor for the St. Clair Shores Lake Shore girls basketball team, coach Jimmy Roehm said.
“I just keep reminding them of what happened last year. We lost the league title to Marysville even though we split with them during the regular season. It was all because we had a meltdown at Mount Clemens earlier in the year,” said Roehm, in his seventh season with the Shorians.
That has stuck with the group, Roehm said, and has played a role in Lake Shore’s success. The Shorians, at press time, sat at 10-1 overall and 4-0 in the Macomb Area Conference Gold Division and were outscoring all opponents by 15.3 points per game. That margin sat at 16.0 points in MAC Gold contests.
“The girls have played extremely well together,” said Roehm, looking to bring the program its first division title since the 2004 season. “We haven’t had any egos get in the way so far. The girls are settling into their roles and understanding what each of them is supposed to do each night.”
The team’s scoring is up 4.4 points per game from last season, scoring 55.5 per contest. On defense, it’s allowing 40.2 points per game. The team likes to get out and run on offense, and press and trap on defense, with the hope of turning turnovers into easy scores.
Roehm said the improvements are a byproduct of experience. Players in the rotation have played a lot of minutes at the varsity level, he said, adding the team only lost one player to graduation. Younger players have also provided Lake Shore with solid play off the bench, Roehm said, and in practice by pushing the veteran players.
“Eight of my 12 girls have had games where they scored in double figures. In three games, every girl has scored a basket,” Roehm said. “(Senior forward) Carly Vargo has scored in every game, but other players are doing the little things like rebounding and playing solid defense, and those things don’t get noticed as much.”
Roehm said senior forward Sarah McCarthy has played extremely well in the post, while junior guard Mackenzie Nemitz has distributed the ball well, tallying at least four assists in each game. Senior wing players Mackenzie Alvae and Rebecca Mazur, Roehm said, have done a nice job of taking the opposition’s best players out of their rhythm, along with knocking down outside shots. Senior wing Paige Plotzke, an All-County player last season, has carried the team for stretches while coming off the bench, Roehm said.
Lake Shore has played well in close games, exhibited by its 4-0 mark in games decided by six points or fewer. Roehm knows those games could have gone either way. The Shorians already hold victories over MAC Gold foes Warren Mott and Anchor Bay by six points and one point, respectively.
“Those are two really good teams, along with Marysville,” Roehm said. “I’m happy to be where we are, but we could have easily lost to either of those teams if we didn’t make plays down the stretch. They’ll be tough challenges the second time around.”
Lake Shore’s next tip is at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 31 against Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse at Lake Shore.