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Newaygo Girls Basketball Emphasizes New Mentality After Last Year’s State Finals Run

NEWAYGO – The Newaygo girls basketball team is off to a hot 3-0 start this season following last year’s historic run to the Division 2 state finals.

The Lions have won each of their games by over 20 points so far in the 2021-22 campaign.

Last year the team finished the year 21-2 as the Div. 2 state runner-up. Both of Newaygo’s losses came against Portland, with the second coming in the state championship game at the Breslin Center in East Lansing.

Newaygo rolled to the program’s third overall state finals with just eight players on the roster last season. Although they lost three seniors, the Lions’ roster size has increased to 10 girls this year.

Head coach Nate Thomasma and the Lions have a renewed mentality this year and said they will not be complacent with last season’s success.

“We haven’t forgotten about last year I mean obviously the girls earned it and they’re going to remember that,” said Thomasma. “But we have in a sense forgotten about it because that’s not going to get us anything this year. So [our focus] is just bringing that same attitude and work ethic and effort from last year, bringing it back to this year.”

“We have a lot of young kids that have to step up and fill those roles of our three seniors. But they’re doing a good job, they’re working hard and they’re getting there,” said Newaygo senior Jaxi Long.

Newaygo (3-0) will host CSAA-Gold opponent Big Rapids (3-1) for its next matchup on Friday, Dec. 17 at 6 p.m.