Dowagiac falls to No. 7-ranked Kalamazoo Christian

Published 5:22 pm Tuesday, January 30, 2024

DOWAGIAC — For one half, the Dowagiac girls basketball team stayed with visiting No. 7-ranked Kalamazoo Christian.

Unfortunately for the Chieftains, the Comets was able to figure out a way to attack Dowagiac’ zone defense and pulled away to a 43-16 non-conference victory Monday night.

Behind a seven-point first quarter effort by Rebecca Guernsey, the Chieftains took a three-point lead into the second quarter.

Both teams continued to struggle offensively as the two defenses dominated the contest. Neither team was able to get multiple shots off as the two teams also rebounded well.

Dowagiac and Kalamazoo Christian had to settle for a 10-10 at the intermission.

“Kalamazoo Christian was a good team,” said Dowagiac Coach Jason Turner. “They play really aggressive on the defensive end and we struggled to knock down some shots. We played a great first half defensively, but they made some good adjustments at the half and came out strong.”

The Comets (11-1) moved all-state guard Jordyn Bonnema into the post area, which allowed her to both score and distribute the ball to her teammates. After being held to her 3-pointer to open the scoring in the first 16 minutes of play, Bonnema scored 13 second-half points to lead Kalamazoo Christian to the victory.

Dowagiac’s leading scorer, Maggie Weller, was held to just one 3-pointer on the night. She spent most of the game in foul trouble. The senior point guard entered the game third in the area in scoring with an average of 14.3 points per game.

“We had some calls that didn’t go our way and we let that get to us a little too much,” Turner said. “It was great to play a team like that to prep us for later this year. It’s time for us to move on and look to the two other games we got this week.”

Guernsey did not score another basket after the opening quarter, but still led Dowagiac in scoring. Marlie Carpenter finished with five points.

Dowagiac will wrap up a busy week with a non-conference game in St. Joseph against Our Lady of the Lake Thursday and a Lakeland Conference contest at Benton Harbor Friday.