Final Buzzer: 1/26/10

Girls games made the biggest impacts on this night, and should cause some movement in the state rankings next week.

Three Pointer:
1. Girls: Waverly 50, St. Johns 28 — Both were undefeated in the CAAC Red and the Redwings have been getting votes in the state Class A poll. Expect those to shift Waverly's way next week. 
2. Girls: Portland 41, Eaton Rapids 29 — The Greyhounds have had a strong argument for moving into the Class B poll, but No. 4 Portland defended its spot as the area's highest-ranked in that class.
3. Boys: Haslett 54, Williamston 47 — The Vikings have had a tough go of it recently, but this was a solid way to get back on the winning side. 

Game ball: Okemos' Whitney Turner had 15 points, 18 rebounds, seven assists, seven blocks and four steals in a 54-28 win over Jackson. That's a week's worth of work for most players. Honorable mention to Holt's Cole Darling, who fell a block shy of a triple double against Everett. Eaton Rapids' Alex Gauna had 31 points and 10 rebounds against Portland and Okemos' Chris Harrison-Docks scored 30 against Jackson. 

Upset central: This probably will make little sense, but I'm going with the Portland girls. Yes, they were ranked higher in the state, but we had Eaton Rapids higher last week in the area rankings because Eaton Rapids had badly beaten DeWitt, which beat Portland in December. So I guess that makes this an upset. But the Raiders are going to be ranked ahead of both after tonight. 

WOW factor: Fowlerville boys 65, Perry 59 — The Gladiators have played themselves into CAAC Gold contention, but escaped a close one against the Ramblers. Fowlerville led 21-6 after a quarter before Perry went on an 18-7 second-quarter run. 

Three more that caught my eye:
1. Boys: Eastern 67, Owosso 57 — The Quakers were favored, of course, but Owosso leads the CAAC Red and trailed by only three points at halftime. Good win for Eastern, not a bad loss for the Trojans.
2. Girls: Haslett 63, Williamston 60 — The Vikings have been a little under the radar in the Gold, but continued building on a solid season so far. 
3. Boys: Ithaca 63, Carrollton 54 — This was a key TVC West win for the Yellowjackets, as Carrollton had only one league loss coming in. 

Final thoughts from the game I covered tonight: Waverly girls 50, St. Johns 28
–With both teams undefeated in the CAAC Red coming in, this one obviously didn't live up to its billing. But there are some reasons that could make the rematch much closer. 
–Although the Redwings started four seniors, only one starter did so last year too. Plus senior center Julianna Glanz transferred to Waverly this season. So this was one of the first BIG games most of St. Johns' squad had played in.
–That said, Waverly's defense was hectic. The Warriors didn't really press, but used a large rotation to constantly pester the Redwings. Senior Kara Peruchietti had three steals, including two in the first two minutes.
–Glanz can be a great asset as she continues to sharpen her post game. She's stayed after practice lately to work on that part of her game, and can be a dangerous complement to senior Emma Holmi's perimeter shooting.
–Waverly 6-1 forward Jasmine Wood is out for the season with a knee injury. She's already been talked about highly, so it's unfortunate the Warriors won't have her in a likely postseason rematch with East Lansing. 
–St. Johns sophomore post Jordyn Nurenberg is headed toward being a great player. She's 6-0 with great presence and a smooth shot from the line.
–I definitely stand by last week's prediction that Waverly is next season's team to beat, especially with Wood back and Carole Harris and Deanna Stickler-Gatson leading a tenacious group of athletic defenders. 
–But they'll definitely miss Holmi. She is a four-year starter and an obvious key on such a young team, especially now without Wood. She can lead them on a run. 

About Geoff Kimmerly

Geoff Kimmerly was the Prep Sports reporter at the Lansing State Journal until September 23, 2011. Read his thoughts and thanks for his 14 seasons with the Lansing State Journal. 1,000 Thanks
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