CADILLAC - Kingsford nearly climbed out of a double-digit hole, but bowed to Midland Bullock Creek 42-32 in a physical Class B Region 16 girls basketball championship Thursday.
The Flivvers trailed 21-10 at halftime and the difference grew to 14 on four occasions in the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Kingsford rallied to within four with less than three minutes remaining.
Andy Hill Photo
Kingsford’s Carlee Benzie (left), Sam Fleming (middle) and Andrea Roell harass a Bullock Creek ballhandler during Thursday’s Class B regional final at Cadillac. The Flivvers lost 42-32.
"It was hard to get into an offensive flow," Flivver coach Mike Cross said of the aggressive Midland defense. "We had to execute better and we had too many turnovers."
Carlee Benzie led the Flivvers (19-5) with 11 points. Sophomore Amber Larson chipped in eight.
After Midland pulled ahead 30-16 in the third quarter, Andrea Roell and Larson followed with baskets to cut the deficit to 10 starting the final quarter.
Midland built the lead to 34-24 with 4:46 when Kingsford mounted a comeback behind four points from Benzie and a Hannah Tresedder bucket.
Midland then turned a 34-30 contest into 39-30 with two minutes to go.
"The girls fought and battled," Cross said. "That (Midland) team is quick with a lot of pieces."
Midland (22-3), led by Hannah Heldt's 15 points, advances to the state quarterfinals Tuesday.
"I can't be any prouder," Cross said of his Flivvers. "It was an absolute blast to be with this team."
Kingsford 5 5 10 12 - 32
Midland BC 10 13 7 12 - 42