Hoops clash set: Border Bash games will feature top UP players | News, Sports, Jobs


IRONWOOD – It’s been a good year for basketball on the Upper Peninsula and it’s reflected in this year’s Kiwanis Classic Border Bash All-Star Game rosters.

Eight players from the region have been selected to participate in the event scheduled for Monday, June 6 at the Lindquist Center on the campus of Gogebic Community College in Ironwood.

The rosters include six players who played in the MHSAA State Finals and two state semifinalists, one from Michigan and one from Wisconsin.

Most of them are on the Northern Michigan men’s team. The two Upper Peninsula Players of the Year – Ewen-Trout Creek’s Jaden Borseth and Menominee’s Aidan Bellisle – are joined by E-TC’s Eric Abramson and Menominee’s Kelsey Jilek and Brady Schultz and Cooper Conway. E-TC and Menominee both qualified for the state championship game last month.

Their teammates include Jack Matrella of Bessemer, Kyle Sorensen of Wakefield-Marenisco and Jeffers Johnny Schutz.

All nine of them made the All-UP team. Borseth, who was named Mr. UP Basketball, Bellisle and Schutz were Dream Teamers.

Sam Larson of Menominee is their coach.

They will face Northern Wisconsin, which includes Hurley State semifinalist Braxton Sbraggia. He broke the 1,000 point mark as a senior and played a key role in the Northstars’ historic season.

The headliner for this team is Denmark’s Donavan Short, a 6-10 forward who will play collegiately at UW-Green Bay. He was also recruited by USC, Virginia Tech and Milwaukee among others.

Additionally, Connor Taylor is Wabeno-Laona’s all-time leading scorer.

Many of the Upper Peninsula’s best are on the Northern Michigan Girls’ roster, including all-five All-UP Dream Team players – Ms. UP Basketball Reide Osterman of Baraga, Division 1-3 Player of the Year Ally Schultz of St. Ignace, Carney-Tessa Wagner from Nadeau, Alyssa Hill from Negaunee and Natalie Prophet from Westwood.

Osterman led Baraga to the state semifinals where the Vikings nearly came back to beat state champion Fowler. The Northern Michigan team will be led by Osterman’s coach, Tyler Larson.

St-Ignace players continue to cross UP to participate. Schultz’s teammate Natalie Ryvolova will also play.

Schultz is a Ferris State commitment. Hill will play at Bemidji State.

They will be joined by two of the Copper Country’s best players – Marybeth Halonen of Calumet and Paige Sleeman of Houghton. Gladstone’s Claire van Ginhoven will also play.

The girls match starts at 5 p.m. with the boys match to follow at 6:30 p.m.

The game returns to Ironwood after taking place at Northland Pines in Eagle River, Wisconsin last year and not taking place at all in 2020. Both were because of the pandemic.

Jason Juno can be contacted at sports@yourdailyglobe.com.



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