The 2019 National Junior College Athletic Association Division II District G women’s basketball tournament began Tuesday night, and the Grand Rapids Community College women’s basketball team picked up an unbelievable 60-59, last-second win over the Jackson College Jets in Summit Township, Michigan.
With the playoffs officially underway, every game is now do-or-die and the Raiders didn’t blink in the face of elimination, even when they were trailing by two on the final possession of the game.
Trailing 59-57, sophomore Hallee Breimayer hit a deep three-pointer with 1.1 seconds remaining in the game, sealing the victory for the Raiders and igniting unbridled excitement from her team. After the game, Raiders’ head coach Dave Glazier talked about the play that he drew up for the game-winning shot.
“The ending was a play designed to go for the tie,” Glazier said. “Just a simple baseline side ball screen for Mady (Miller) with Hal (Breimayer) trailing as a safety. Jackson did a good job on the ball screen and Hal hit a big shot.”
Glazier has been saying for weeks now that the team needs to turn in full, 40-minute performances and Tuesday night, the Raiders did just that.
“Tough battle right to the end,” Glazier said. “Kids were gritty, they battled through the ups and downs for 40 minutes.”
Breimayer had 11 points, but none bigger than the three at the end of the game. She added five rebounds and seven assists. Sophomore Mya Jordan led the team with 19 points while Emily Pendred had eight points and a monsterous 17 rebounds.
The Raiders will move on to the next round where a familiar, yet formidable foe awaits them. The Lake Michigan College Red Hawks are the No. 1 seed in the women’s bracket and earned an automatic bye to the second round.
The Red Hawks have given the Raiders trouble this season beating them 62-39 in their first meeting, and 62-45 in the second. The Raiders will surely have their work cut out for them, but riding the wave of momentum from a game-winning three could be just the spark they need.
The Raiders will take on the Redhawks on Thursday, March 7 at 7:30 p.m. in the Gerald R. Ford Fieldhouse where GRCC will play host for the NJCAA DII Region XII men’s and women’s tournament. The Raiders are hoping for a win and to advance to the tournament championship on Saturday, March 9 at 3 p.m.
For a full list of the men’s and women’s tournament brackets, click here.