TRAVERSE CITY — When Glen Lake tipped off its regional semifinal on Monday, it was only 72 hours removed from celebrating its first district championship since 2002.
Think there was a hangover? Think again.
The Lakers came out firing on all cylinders and put Lincoln-Alcona away early with a 70-44 victory in the Class C regional semifinal at Traverse City West.
Glen Lake (22-2) moves on to play Shelby (16-8) for the regional title on Wednesday at 7 p.m. The Tigers advanced with a 79-57 win over Pine River in Monday’s first semifinal.
Shelby is all-too-familiar to many of the Lakers, after beating Glen Lake for the district championship in football.
“It’ll be nice to get another shot at them,” said Glen Lake’s Carter Lee, who is also quarterback on the football team. “It’ll be a real good game. For the football game, we had to go down there, so it’ll be nice that they have to to come up here for this one.”
Lincoln-Alcona (15-6) took a 7-5 lead early in the first quarter off a Jared Steiner 3-pointer. It would be the last time the Lakers trailed.
Glen Lake closed out the quarter on a 17-2 run for a 22-9 lead and extended it to 43-23 at the half.
“I think we’re starting to ramp it up defensively, which tonight made our offense go,” Glen Lake coach Todd Hazelton said. “We had a lot of fast-break baskets. That helped us out a lot.”
The Lakers finished with 12 steals on the night and a lot of transition buckets.
“That’s what we emphasize in practice,” Lakers senior Curtis Bunek said. “It’s defense, defense, defense. Defense will take us a long way.”
“We watched tape on Lincoln-Alcona on Saturday and we felt like we could run a little bit more than we did against St. Francis,” Hazelton said. “St. Francis loves to do that, and we didn’t feel Lincoln-Alcona would like to run. So we wanted to be up-tempo, for sure.”