Silver Bay survived several runs by Fond du Lac Ojibwe to hold on for a 41-39 season-opening win Tuesday, Nov. 26, in Cloquet.
The Mariners jumped out to a 17-7 lead early in the first half, but three consecutive 3-pointers — two by Tannia Misquadace and another by Solai Mohr — cut the Mariner lead to one with about 3 minutes to play in the first half. The teams traded buckets to end the half with Silver Bay leading 21-20.
In the second half, FDLO edged in front and Misquadace hit her third shot from long range to give the Ogichidaag a 32-29 lead with about 6 minutes to play.
The Silver Bay defense stiffened late in the half with the Mariners getting hands in the passing lanes and forward Hannah Thums keeping the Ogichidaag off the offensive glass.
Consecutive FDLO turnovers led to layups by freshman Danika Thompson and senior Kaylee Volesky powered a 12-0 run by Silver Bay.
Misquadace and Talayah Martineau each connected on 3-pointers in the closing minutes, but the Ogichidaag rally ran out of time.
Senior Lily Lewis led the Mariners with 13 points and Kaylee Volesky scored 11 in the win. Other scorers included Thums with 10 and Thompson with seven.
Silver Bay head coach John Sandstrom was particularly happy with the Mariners’ defensive effort and keeping FDLO from getting into its offensive game.
“I love our defense, our defense is going to be the best part of our team,” Sandstrom said. “We played on offense like it was the first game of the season — we threw the ball away and took some shots we didn’t need to take. But I’m so proud of these kids, sometimes it feels like we’re going backwards, but then you see what they worked so hard on over the summer and they’re getting better.”
Brown saw some improvement with his team over last year with the way the bounced back after falling behind their opponent.
“They show some resilience — I thought they were really composed when they got down,” Brown said. “Last year, when we went down by 10 points or whatever, we normally got discouraged and gave up. Today, I think we showed some composure and knowing that we could battle back. I think they are understanding that defense has a big role in the game and it turns us into a quick break offense.”
Silver Bay (1-0) is scheduled to play at Duluth Denfeld at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3.
FDLO (0-1) is scheduled to play at Wrenshall at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 2.
SIlver Bay 21-20—41
Fond du Lac Ojibwe 20-19—39
SIlver Bay — Danika Thompson 7, Kaylee Volesky 11, Lily Lewis 13, Hannah Thums 10.
3-point goals — None.
Fond du Lac Ojibwe — Solai Mohr 6, Allison Cooley 8, Talayah Martineau 5, Tannis Misqaudace 18, Ashlynn Eagle 2.
3-point goals — Misquadace 4, Mohr, Cooley 2, Martineau.