LANSING | Because of the holiday break and recent winter storm, T.F. South had only been on the court once in the last ten days.
And for the first four minutes of Thursday night’s game against Argo it showed.
The Argonauts held the T.F. South scoreless for the first four minutes and looked like they may pull off the upset and hand the Rebels their first conference loss of the season.
But after a shaky start, T.F. South went on a 22-2 run and never looked back in extending their conference winning streak to five games with a 59-46 victory.
“We’ve only had one practice in the last 10 days and it showed early,” coach Steve Breshock said. “We started a little slow tonight but we shook the rust off. I liked our energy and discipline in the second half.”
Ren’Cia Rolling led a trio of Rebels (12-2, 5-0 South Suburban Blue) in double figures with 16 points to go along with 10 assists and Ninah Bertrand and Kameron Dickens chipped in 15 and 10 points apiece.
“We knew that this could be a special team,” Bertrand said. “We had a list of goals we wanted to achieve coming into the season and knew that if we stayed focused and kept a strong work ethic we could be good.”
It looked like Argo (7-6, 1-4 SSC Red) had a chance to get back into the game midway through the third quarter.
Dickens and fellow starter India Pierson each picked up their fourth foul in a two-minute span and went to the bench. But with Bertrand at the helm T.F. South held it together and put the game out of reach.
“There were adjustments to be made with Kam and India on the bench,” Bertrand said. “Everyone knew they had to play smarter and made the adjustments.”
On the night Bertrand played 30 minutes and was the glue that kept the Rebels together no matter who was on the floor with her.
“She’s a phenomenal kid and a great captain,” Breshock said. “She doesn’t jump the highest and she’s not the quickest but she has a very high basketball IQ, her instincts are what make her so good.
After suffering through T.F. South’s first losing season in eight years, Bertrand did not want to be there again in her final season.
“She deserves this success,” Breshock said. “She took last year very personally and really took charge in the summer getting the team together and working out.”
Being 12-2 halfway through the season has the Rebels on the road to achieving the goal of a conference title, but Bertrand knows there is still work to be done.
“We can’t let this start go to our heads,” she said. “We have to stay focused and work hard we can’t lose our toughness if we want to achieve our goals.”