Tuscola girls’ basketball seniors go out on top in senior night game

By Lenny Sementi 
Abbey Jacob and Grace Voyles make up a small but solid senior class for head girls basketball coach Tim Kohlbecker. The duo personifies the tag of team players and what it takes for a program to be successful night in and night out. Jacob hit a big three in the first frame in an intense 46-41 upset of tenth-ranked Sullivan this past Thursday avenging a loss last week to the Lady Redskins in the semi-finals of the Central Illinois Tournament.

“Senior night is always a special night for me,” Kohlbecker stated. “Grace Voyles who is the consummate teammate and got the start this evening and gave us solid minutes. Abbey has been in staring lineup most of the season and knows her role. She has emerged as our on court leader and has a high basketball IQ. I want to thank them for the four years of commitment!”

Brynn Tabeling got the ball rolling with two quick buckets but it was not enough only three Warriors were able to the find the scorebook in the initial frame allowing Sullivan to end the first in front 13-9. Marissa Russo scored the first six points of the second frame putting one back for a bucket before finishing of a feed from Dietrich as the two teams traded points most of the frame and headed to the locker room separated by just two with Sullivan in front 20-18.

Tabeling handed coach K. the Warriors first lead of the night at the 6:41 mark of the third frame with a runner. Russo then found her way to the line early shortly converting a pair at the line before finishing two buckets in the paint combating the high powered offense of the Lady Redskins as the two teams traded leads throughout the frame entering the final stanza knotted at 29. The Warriors post ended the night with a game-high twenty-three points, grabbed nine rebounds, three offensive putting back a pair, and hit seven of eight from the line including four of four in the final eight minutes of action. She tallied the first two of the fourth at the charity stripe and hit another two later in the frame delivering eight points down the stretch.

Tabeling was six of eight from the line as well connecting on both free throws after a technical foul on the Redskins bench. Russo followed with a bucket on the ensuing possession giving Tuscola a 41-33 lead heading in the final two minutes of the game. The two juniors iced it each hitting both ends of double bonuses to fend off a last ditch effort by the visitors securing moving the Warriors to 16-9 on the year.

Tabeling was money at the stripe hitting eight of thirteen in the game on her way to sixteen points. She also hauled in five rebounds, dished out two assists and swiped a team-best four steals. Dietrich did a little of everything as well adding two points, two steals, and four assists to her season stat line.

“That was an exciting, fun high school basketball game, Sullivan is ranked in the top ten in the state,” commented the coach. “Our girls stayed focused on our defensive game plan and they executed it brilliantly. Everyone competed and once again refused to quit. We held two of the best players in the area to a combined eighteen points. Sophie Kremitzki continues to play well defensively, she was given a special attention tonight and as a result we had trouble getting her shots. Marissa and Brynn had great games and overall it was a great team win.”

Maddie Stahler and Laney Cummings each scored seven points doubling the score of Sullivan in the JV game winning 32-16 wrapping up and putting a bow on top of a perfect 16-0 campaign. JV head coach Mike Rosenbaum and his assistant Justin Quick’s group dominated their competition most of the season and the last night was no different as all eight players in the score book tallied at least two points. Kyla Gough, Abigail Pettry and Marley Good all ended the night with four points a piece.

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