Carson Sanders of Hanover-Horton High School drives to the basket during the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 3 state semifinal on Thursday at Breslin Student Event Center on the campus of Michigan State University. Photo by Jeff Steers, JTV Sports.
By Jeff Steers
(April 8, 2021 3:09 PM) Hanover-Horton High School boys’ basketball Coach Chad Mortimer said he always went to the high school final four with his son Conner.
The dream was to play in the final four some day with Chad as the coach and Conner as the player.
That dream came true on Thursday as Hanover-Horton faced Flint Beecher in the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 3 semifinal at the Breslin Student Event Center.
But it did not end in Disney fashion as Beecher defeated the Comets 47-34. Hanover-Horton finishes the season with a 20-2 record and a lot of memories of surviving COVID-19 and winning titles.
“I couldn’t be any prouder of this team … they did everything I asked for them to do,” Coach Mortimer said. “These guys sacrificed so much going into a bubble 10 days before the tournament started.
“They are an outstanding group of young men.”
Hanover-Horton lost eight seniors from last year’s team but managed to get into the state semifinals.
“We exceeded a lot of expectations from people,” Conner Mortimer said. “We knew what we were capable of doing.”
The Comets could keep up with Flint Beecher, tying the game at 8-all late in the first quarter. Beecher scored the last four points of the quarter for a 12-8 lead.
Everything seemed to fall apart in the second quarter as Beecher outscored the Comets 13-4 for a 25-12 halftime lead.
But Hanover-Horton adjusted and scored the first five points of the third quarter. They held Beecher to seven points in the third quarter.
But shots were not falling for the Comets. Hanover-Horton shot less than 30 percent from the field for the game and were 2-for-19 from the 3-point line.
“We dug ourselves too deep a hole,” Coach Mortimer said. “You have to be able to score against Beecher.”
Beecher made 10 free throws in the fourth quarter to maintain the lead.
Mortimer led Hanover-Horton with 13 points, Brogan Brockie scored 12 points and hauled in five rebounds, and Carson Sanders scored nine points with three assists.
They were the only three players to score in the contest for H-H.
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