West Bloomfield — Wayne Memorial showed Temperance Bedford it would be in for a long evening in the opening quarter of their Division 1 state quarterfinal game Tuesday, going on to earn a one-sided 50-28 win.
Wayne — 24-2 and ranked No. 4 in The News Super 20 — scored the game’s first six points and stormed out to a 14-4 lead after one, getting eight offensive rebounds and forcing eight turnovers, mostly with its fullcourt pressure.
Wayne extended the lead to 29-14 at halftime and 47-20 after three.
Wayne will face defending Class A state champion and No. 6 Saginaw Heritage (23-2) in a noon state semifinal Friday at Calvin College.
“Basically, we’re all about pressure so we knew if we pressured them we’d be able to get steals and get turnovers so all we had to do was capitalize off of them,” said Wayne senior point guard Jeanae Terry (Illinois), who scored nine. “We work a lot on rebounding in practice so rebounding is just what we do. We know if we aren’t going to make a shot, just crash (the boards).”
Senior guard Sammiyah Hoskin led Wayne with 13 points and 6-foot sophomore forward Alanna Micheaux scored eight and both players were a reason Wayne had five chances to score on one possession, which led to a putback basket by Terry for a 4-0 lead.
“Anytime that you have athletes, you want to try and get to where you can use those athletes and thank God a lot of those kids are born with natural abilities and instincts that I don’t have to coach,” Wayne coach Jarvis Mitchell said. “Sometimes you need that more than you need Xs and Os in coaching. Sometimes you have to rely on your kids to get it done and thank God we definitely have those athletes.”
Wayne has three starters who started in last year’s Class A state semifinal game at Calvin College, a 60-52 loss to East Lansing, along with Micheaux and Michigan commit Makailah Griggs-Zeigler, a 5-11 junior forward who came off the bench.
So, will that Final Four experience help Wayne when it returns to Calvin College Friday?
“Being there is way better than going there for the first time so you know how to play and what type of atmosphere is down there so we’re pretty much prepared to go down there and play our type of style,” Terry said. “We just need to get back in the gym and work.”
Said Mitchell: “The thing about it is I try to tell the kids not to focus on that. We just want to get better every day. Yes, Calvin is in the back of every high school’s mind, but if you concentrate on that too much it (gets in the way) of what you really need to concentrate on, and that’s getting better because these are emotional little girls, still teenagers, so once you start heightening or sensationalizing the situation then they put all their nervous and anxious energy in there and now the game can become a different outcome.”
Junior guard Aubrie Zeunen scored 13 for Bedford (20-6).
More girls quarterfinals
Saginaw Heritage 44, Hartland 24: Mallory McCartney scored 15 and Moira Joiner 11 for Heritage (23-2). Whitney Sollom scored 10 for Hartland (22-4).