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Prep Roundup: Traverse City West complete miracle comeback, advance to D1 hockey regional semis

Feb. 19—MUSKEGON — The players and coaches on the Traverse City West hockey team believe in miracles.

"This team has a lot of heart, and they will not go down without a fight," TC West head coach Anthony Palumbo said after the Titans' 4-3 comeback win in Monday's Division 1 regional quarterfinal against Muskegon Mona Shores.

The Traverse City West community is still reeling from the serious and life-threatening injuries Titan hockey player Brady Lewis suffered during a Feb. 9 game. Lewis is recovering from a fractured neck and a bruised spine after he was checked from behind and slid headfirst into the boards during a game against Cadillac.

The Titans canceled the remainder of that game and the game the following day but have since gotten back to action on the ice while honoring Lewis by wearing "19" — Lewis' jersey number — on their helmets.

West, which entered the postseason on a three-game skid, rallied back from a 3-0 deficit against Mona Shores to pull out an amazing come-from-behind victory and extend their season at least one more game.

The Sailors tacked in all three goals during the first period. Palumbo said the players had some nerves going into the game; but in the last two periods, Palumbo knew the players weren't going out without a fight.

West's Jonah Starr scored the only goal in the second period as Brandon Meyers and Lincoln Seyferth assisted. The Titans rallied in the third period to make Monday's regional quarterfinal a game they will always remember.

"We aren't going to forget this game," Palumbo said with some emotion in his voice.

Seyferth found the net with 10:20 to play in the third period, getting an assist from Meyers. Meyers scored the game-tying goal with 9:33 to play, and three minutes later, Kallen Ray scored the go-ahead goal with 6:29 to play.

Titans' goalkeeper Alonso Ovaitt had 25 saves on 28 shots, including a game-saver on a shot with six seconds to spare.

West returns to Muskegon for the D1 regional semifinals with seventh-ranked Sparta waiting for them.

"It's going to take a great effort, and we know we are playing a great team," Palumbo said. "But after the week we've had, we believe in miracles. We truly believe that good things happen when you handle things in a good way."

BOYS HOOPS

TC Christian 66

GT Academy 39

Traverse City Christian: Malachi Willis 16 points; Garrett Schultz 15 points; Jonah Mleko 11 points.

UP NEXT: The Sabres (15-5) host Buckley on Tuesday. The Mustangs (2-18) host Ellsworth on Tuesday.

Frankfort 66

Baldwin 58

Frankfort: Bryce Plesha 20 points, 12 rebounds; Carter Kerby 16 points; Tristin Griffin 15 points; Eli Lietaert 7 points, 9 rebounds.

UP NEXT: The Panthers (14-7, 8-5 Northwest) host Onekama on Tuesday.

Cadillac 64

MP Sacred Heart 38

Cadillac: Charlie Howell 24 points, 9 rebounds, 3 blocks; Eli Main 15 points; Kyle McGowan 9 points, 7 rebounds.

UP NEXT: The Vikings (18-2, 9-0 Big North) travel to Traverse City St Francis on Tuesday.

Harbor Light 56

Brimley 37

UP NEXT: The Swordsmen (16-4, 8-2 Northern Lakes) travel to Burt Lake Northern Michigan Christian on Tuesday.

Harbor Springs 66

Cheboygan 36

UP NEXT: The Rams (15-6, 10-4 Lake Michigan) host Sault Area on Thursday.

Pine River 77

Kalkaska 44

UP NEXT: The Blazers (1-19, 0-13 Big North) travel to Charlevoix on Wednesday.

GIRLS HOOPS

TC Central 55

Saginaw AH 50

Traverse City Central: Lucia France 21 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal; Jakiah Brumfield 17 points, 4 rebounds, 8 assists; Lorelai Zielinski 9 points, 1 rebound, 2 assists.

UP NEXT: The Trojans (15-3, 9-0 Big North) host Midland Dow on Tuesday.

Cadillac 43

TC West 29

Traverse City West: Mikayla Thompson 12 points; Audrey LaFaive 6 points.

UP NEXT: The Vikings (10-8, 4-5 Big North) host Big Rapids on Tuesday. The Titans (6-14, 2-6 Big North) host Gaylord on Tuesday.

Onekama 69

Mesick 19

Onekama: Callie Sinke 28 points; Ava Mauntler 26 points; Abby Ziller 10 points.

Mesick: Kayla McCoy 13 points.

UP NEXT: The Bulldogs (5-13, 5-9 West Michigan D) travel to Marion on Wednesday. The Portagers (11-7, 7-6 Northwest) travel to Lake Leelanau St Mary on Wednesday.

Ludington 38

Benzie Central 19

Benzie Central: Kara Johnson 9 points; Flora Zickert 7 points.

UP NEXT: The Huskies (9-9, 7-6 Northwest) travel to Manistee on Wednesday.

Ellsworth 38

Central Lake 29

Ellsworth: Bella Essenberg 13 points.

Central Lake: Claire Shooks 10 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, 9 steals; Maleeya Hibbard 10 points, 1 rebound, 7 steals; Abby Miller 8 rebounds, 2 steals.

UP NEXT: The Lancers (11-7, 8-3 Northern Lakes) travel to Petoskey St Michael on Feb 27. The Trojans (3-15, 3-10 Ski Valley) travel to Gaylord St Mary on Wednesday.

Manistee 65

Holton 54

Manistee: Libby McCarthy 26 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 blocks; Jayna Edmondson 20 points; Alayna Edmondson 9 assists.

UP NEXT: The Mariners (8-10, 5-5 West Michigan Lakes) host Benzie Central on Wednesday.

Pellston 26

Forest Area 25

UP NEXT: The Warriors (0-17, 0-13 Ski Valley) host Pellston on Tuesday.

TC West JV 33

Cadillac JV 24

Traverse City West: Myah Skorupski 8 points; Nora Buttleman 6 points.