Raiders top Chieftains, fall in Regional Semis
The Lake Holcombe Chieftains and the Bruce Red Raider boy’s basketball teams met for the third time last Tuesday night in the opening round of the WIAA Regional, and this time it was for more than a conference title as the loser would see their season come to an end in Bruce.
The first half was much like the previous two match ups between the two East Lakeland Conference foes that saw the two teams split the regular season match ups as Lake Holcombe took a five point lead into the locker room at the half by a score of 29-24.
For the Chieftains it was Dylan Bowen leading the way in the first half with three 3-pointers with nine points. Brock Flater was the second leading scorer at the half with six points and Kaden Krank added five points for Lake Holcombe.
The Red Raiders were led by Drew Chafer coming off the bench to score seven points in the first half. Ryan Popowich scored six points as Jake Thome battled through an ankle sprain to score four points.
In the second half both teams left it on the court as the game came down to the final minute where Bruce went on to out score the Chieftains 24-17 on their way to advancing to the next round of Regionals with a 48-46 victory at home.
Dan Brockman’s nine point second half led the way as the senior finished with 11 points. Matt and Ryan Popowich both finished the night with nine points as Thome finished with eight points and Chafer chipped in with seven.
For the Chieftains it was Flater and Crank both finishing in double digits with 10 points as Bowen had nine points while Colton Minnick and Tate Sauerwein both added six point in the final game of the Chieftains season last Tuesday night.
For the Chieftains it was the final game for the seniors as Flater, Crank, Sauerwein, Riley Gringras and Will Kliegle wrapped up great careers for head coach, Joy Webster and the Lake Holcombe School District. The Chieftains finished the season with an 11-11 record on the season that didn’t get started til January due to COVID.
With their two point victory over Lake Holcombe at home, the Raiders advanced to last Friday’s Regional semi-final game on the road in Chippewa as they took on the top seeded Mac’s from McDonell.
McDonell put the Raiders in a deep hole with a 40-14 lead at the end of the first half as they handed the Raiders their fourth loss of the season by a score of 65-46.
It was Brockman finishing the night as the leading scorer for Bruce with 13 points as Matt Popowich ended the night with 11 points. Ryan Popowich went on to score six points on the night as Jake Thome chipped in with five points.
The Red Raiders capped off the careers of the three seniors McCoy Mansky, Drew Chafer and Dan Brockman with a 14-4 overall record as well as an East Lakeland Conference title under first year head coach, Ed Lanzer.