Roseville girls basketball clamps down on defense in playoff win over Eastpointe

Panthers pitch a shutout in fourth quarter

By: Jason Carmel Davis | Online Only | Published February 28, 2018

 Roseville High's Maddie LaGassa looks to drive past Eastpointe High's Daryn Watson in a game earlier this season. The Panthers beat the Shamrocks 42-23 in a Feb. 28 Class a district semifinal.

Roseville High's Maddie LaGassa looks to drive past Eastpointe High's Daryn Watson in a game earlier this season. The Panthers beat the Shamrocks 42-23 in a Feb. 28 Class a district semifinal.

Photo by Sean Work

GROSSE POINTE — With his team trailing 23-22 after three quarters of a Feb. 28 Class A district semifinal against Eastpointe High, Roseville High girls basketball coach Andy Houghton made it clear he thought his team had sleptwalked through the first 75 percent of the game.

The Panthers were wide awake in the fourth, outscoring the Shamrocks 20-0 in the final frame to secure a 42-23 win. Roseville (7-13) advances to face either St. Clair Shores Lakeview or Grosse Pointe North in a district final set for 6:30 p.m. March 2.

"They knew they hadn't been playing their best," Houghton said. "We didn't play well at all for most of the game, but we were able to make plays when it counted."

All of Roseville's fourth-quarter scoring came from either junior forward DeBraya Edwards or senior wing Maddie LaGassa. Eleven of LaGassa's game-high 19 points game in the fourth. Edwards netted nine of her 17 points in the game's final frame. Several of the Panthers' fourth quarter points came in transition, as the team forced a number of miscues in the stanza.

"DeBraya wasn't feeling well," Houghton said. "She's our leading scorer. (LaGassa) really stepped up. That's just senior leadership."

Eastpointe (1-18) built its lead on the strength of a strong 3-2 zone defense. Roseville through most of the game couldn't solve the Shamrocks zone, which coach Krysta Kreyger implemented out of necessity.

"We knew we'd have to play zone because (Roseville) has a lot more size than we do, so we wanted to do that to keep them from crashing the glass" Kreyger said. "We had a good game plan. I think nerves came into play in the fourth quarter. We didn't have many games where we had the lead that late."

Junior forward T'Ices Spicer led Eastpointe with 10 points. 

For continuous coverage of the state girls basketball playoffs, check www.candgnews.com.