Whitehall guard Devontae Vance (left) tries to get to the basket as Spring Lake’s Adam Clauss defends during Friday night’s district championship game at Orchard View. Vance had a team-high 14 points, but Whitehall fell just short in a 53-46 loss to the L
MUSKEGON — It looked like Whitehall’s night at the end of the first half Friday, when senior star Isaac Love calmly drilled a nearly half-court shot at the buzzer to give the Vikings a halftime lead over heavily favored Spring Lake.
However, Spring Lake’s Austin Johnson made sure it wouldn’t be, taking over the game in the second half and guiding his Lakers past Whitehall, 53-46, for a district title.
The Vikings ended the season at 9-13, but they looked much better than that record through much of the contest.
“I always talk about competing and giving effort,” Whitehall coach Nate Aardema said. “They left it all on the floor. That’s all we’ve ever asked of the kids. They showed great character in terms of how they battled.”
Indeed, the Vikings had an answer for almost every attempt by the Lakers to take control of the game, especially early on. Whitehall kept getting open looks and consistently knocked them down. All told, the Vikings had eight three-pointers, half by Love.
Whitehall edges Oakridge in semis
MUSKEGON — Whitehall raced out to a huge early lead and managed to stave off the Oakridge Eagles Wednesday night to advance to the district finals with a 50-48 win.
The Vikings had split with Oakridge during the regular season, but with Wednesday’s win have now defeated six of the last eight West Michigan Conference opponents on their schedule.
Shelby upsets Montague in semis
HOLTON — After Shelby and Montague played two instant classics during the regular season, splitting the two matchups, Wednesday night’s battle between the squads was hotly anticipated.
However, the Tigers wasted little time sucking the drama from the contest, taking quick control and never really letting it go to earn an 83-71 win and bring a premature end to a successful season for Montague.
R-P drops district opener at Shores
MUSKEGON — Reeths-Puffer struggled through the second and third quarters of Monday night’s pre-district showdown at Mona Shores, and the swoon cost the Rockets a win as the Sailors advanced with a 66-54 win.
R-P led 17-14 after one, but the Sailors outscored the Rockets 37-19 in the pivotal middle frames, creating a hole too big to surmount.
See full stories in Beacon print or e-edition