Broncos shut down Lady Trojans
KINGSFORD—After winning their eighth straight district championship the week before, Forest Park’s girls’ hopes were flying high. But they came crashing down March 6 at the Class D regional semifinals.
Bark River-Harris, which the Lady Trojans defeated 49-37 in their regular season finale Feb. 23, got the last laugh, outplaying Forest Park most of the night, using aggressive defense on the young squad and earning a 51-44 victory.
“We had opportunities to score,” FP coach Jackie Giuliani said later, “and we weren’t able to make them.” The team missed some easy baskets—and junior forward Claudia Nocerini, who was out with a back injury. “She’s an offensive piece for us,” the coach explained. “She sees the floor well, and she’s able to score.”
Without a key member of the team’s regular rotation, everybody else had to work harder and got tired sooner. “When you’re tired, you do miss [shots] more.”
The coach credited the Lady Trojans for their effort and hard work on defense, but “I just don’t think we shot well—that’s what it came down to.” The stat sheet said FP made only 31 percent of its shots from the floor; Bark River-Harris made 45 percent.
The win advanced the Lady Broncos to the regional finals, where they battled a powerful Chassell team into overtime before losing 58-55. Meanwhile, Forest Park closed the books on a 13-10 season.
FP scored the game’s first points and there were five lead changes early in the game, but whenever the Lady Trojans moved ahead, Bark River-Harris fought right back. Midway through the second quarter, the Broncos went ahead for good.
BRH’s Megan Robinette scored seven points, with two 3-pointers, in the first quarter. In the second frame, no Bronco player scored more than four, but BRH’s defense stymied the Lady Trojans—Taylor Honkala got FP’s only basket in a three-point quarter. The Broncos led 15-11 at halftime and two Hailee Demers
hoops made it 19-11 early in the second half.