East Grand Rapids, Mich. – The Grandville Bulldogs opened postseason play with a 14-4 victory over the Grand Haven Buccaneers on Friday (May 11) at East Grand Rapids High School to advance to the District One Semi-Finals against the Zeeland Chix .on Saturday at 11:45 am at EGR.
The Bulldogs featured an evenly spread offensive attack. Senior captain Julia Veenkamp, and sophomores Chloe Graverson and Lucy Baker all netted three goals apiece in the victory. Senior Emily Anglim and junior Sammy DeYoung also netted two goals apiece, while junior Lindsey Gregorski scored her first career varsity goal late in the second half.
With the victory, the Bulldogs automatically clinched a berth in the West Regional Tournament starting May 18 at East Kentwood High School, and did it for the first time in three years.
“This is a great thing for this program,” Head Coach Mitch Fountain said. “This was an elimination game. With the chips on the table, our kids went all in. To be in the District Semi-Final is certainly exciting, as well as the qualifier to make it to Regionals, something this senior class has not yet done at the varsity level.”
Defensively, the Bulldogs stole the ball 23 times, led by the five of junior Aubrie Scott. Four of her steals came in a two minute and 13 second stretch in the third quarter. Julia Veenkamp also had four to go with three assists and three drawn exclusions, while Graverson added three steals and three assists for the game.
In goal, senior captain Rachel Veenkamp made 12 saves and picked up a steal in her career-best 18th victory of the season.
Grandville sets for the rubber match with the Zeeland Chix on Saturday at 11:45 am at EGR High School. The Bulldogs and Chix have split the two contests, and the margin in both was just a single goal.
“Zeeland is a challenging opponent,” Assistant Coach Harrison Watt said. “They’re coached by one of the better people in the state you’ll come across. You look forward to games like that, and we expect them to come ready to play. We’re very happy to have qualified for Regionals, but by no stretch is that our ultimate goal.”
Regardless of the May 12th results, Grandville will play at East Kentwood in the West Regional Tournament on Friday, May 18. The first game is single elimination, with the winner earning a bid to the State Championship Tournament at Saline High School on June 1-2.