The Imlay City girls’ basketball team poses for a photo after claiming a top regional finish.


IMLAY CITY — The Imlay City girls’ basketball team earned their first-ever Division 2 regional championship, accomplishing the feat with a 42-35 triumph against Lutheran North in the title tilt it hosted last Wednesday night.

With the outcome, Imlay City advances to a quarterfinal clash set for Monday, April 5 at Ortonville-Brandon High School. That battle lists a 7 p.m. starting time. Detroit Country Day provides their opposition for that encounter.

“It was great to have the opportunity to play for a regional title again,” Imlay City Coach Heather Lauwers said. “These girls were hungry to be a part of the game after having our season ended due to the circumstances of the pandemic in 2020,” she noted.

“It was very difficult not being there physically due to a job obligation, but I knew our coaching staff had prepared the girls to the best of their ability. We will need to maintain the focus and momentum that we bring to every game to continue our season.”

In Wednesday’s matchup, Imlay City spotted Lutheran North a 17-9 advantage after one quarter was over with.

Imlay City then bounced back with a 17-7 second quarter edge, good for a 26-24 lead at the halftime break.

The third quarter saw Imlay City net five points as did Lutheran North. That left Imlay City up by a narrow 31-29 count with 24 minutes gone.

The fourth quarter would see things stay close. It was there Lutheran North put together a 4-2 run over a 6:05 span, making it a 33-33 contest with 1:55 remaining.

Imlay City then went ahead 36-33 on an Ana Lengemann triple 1:35 from the finish.

The hosts followed it up with a 7-2 run over the next minute-plus. assuring themselves of a 42-35 victory at night’s end.

Ana Lengemann (12, featuring a pair of treys) and Mary Lengemann (10) led Imlay City with double figure point totals. Lily Lengemann (eight, with a pair of triples), Kayla Rossen (six) along with Jaya Forti, Dakota Deel and Abigail Thibodeau (two each) supported their performances.

Kevin Kissane has been covering high school sports for the Tri-City Times since 1985. When not standing on a field or court with his camera and notepad, he enjoys golf, travel and family. Kevin is a 1980 graduate of Capac High School, and is also a grad of St. Clair Community College and earned a degree in journalism from Central Michigan University.