Seniors win final home game

Published 9:15 am Thursday, February 28, 2019

DOWAGIAC — There were mixed emotions for Dowagiac senior Kellyn Daly as she played the final home game of her career Tuesday night.

Daly scored 17 points to help lead the Chieftains to a 47-38 non-conference girls basketball game against Coloma.

Daly, along with fellow seniors Taylor Pye and Amiyah Smith, have been a part of trying to rebuild the girls basketball program the past few years.

She knows that with the over Coloma, the team continues moving in the right direction as it has won four of its last five games and went 5-0 against non-conference opponents.

A win over host Paw Paw tonight in the Wolverine Conference crossover game would give Dowagiac a three-game winning streak heading into next week’s district tournament.

It would also give Dowagiac eight wins, something the program has not seen in quite some time.

“It was pretty sad,” Daly said. “I was glad we got the ‘W’ though. We went 5-0 in non-conference.”

Daly said that being a part of trying to revive the girls basketball program has been pretty amazing.

“Having a lot of people come out and support us really helps us a lot,” she said. “Seeing the community come together to watch us win is nice.”

Dowagiac coach Brent Nate, who is in his third year, is also pleased with the direction the program is headed. He knows that his trio of seniors have been a key part of that process.

“We finished up the conference 5-0, which was a goal of ours,” he said. “I cannot tell you the last time that happened. It is something to be proud of. It says something about the seniors and the work they have put in. From where they were as freshmen to where they are now is impressive. I am proud of them.”

All three seniors played a key role in the win over the Comets Tuesday night.

Beside Daly, Smith scored nine points and Pye added five points and 10 rebounds.

Dowagiac also got help from its underclassmen as Allie Conner finished with 12 points.

Her aggressiveness, along with Daly, attacking the basket, was part of the reason the Chieftains were able to turn a 18-17 halftime deficit into a 34-27 lead after three quarters.

Dowagiac (7-12) went 9-of-15 from the free throw line, including 6-of-10 in the fourth quarter.

Coloma was led by center Megan Neubecker’s game-high 19 points.

The Chieftains will open up Division 2 district tournament play Monday night when it travels to Three Rivers to face the host Wildcats at approximately 7 p.m.