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CatchMark Catch-Up

CatchMark Catch-Up highlights West Michigan Conference winter sports (Jan. 23, 2023)

Week of Jan. 16-21, 2023.

Welcome to another week. Welcome to another episode of the CatchMark Catch-Up, a weekly recap of winter sports highlights in the West Michigan Conference.

We’re focusing on events that took place Jan. 16-21, 2023.

This is Episode 3 of the Catch-Up for the 2022-23 winter sports season. Here’s a trip around the conference and its highlights.


We’re going to kick this thing off with some wrestling. On Saturday, Montague hosted the Greater Muskegon Athletic Association wrestling tournament, featuring wrestlers from a dozen schools.

To nobody’s surprise, Whitehall rolled to its 16th GMAA title in 17 years. The Vikings piled up 242.5 points, easily beating runner-up Reeths-Puffer, which totaled 157. Montague was fourth with 108 points and Orchard View fifth with 90.5 points.

Oakridge, North Muskegon, Ravenna and Holton also represented the West Michigan Conference at the GMAA tourney.

Individual champions from the WMC included Montague’s Christopher Aebig at 132 and Tristan Winkleblack at 150, and from Whitehall Wyatt Jenkins at 175, Jackson Cook at 190 and Shane Cook at 285. The Vikings trio pinned their way through the tournament.


Recent girls basketball rivals Hart and Montague squared off in a WMC nondivisional showdown last Thursday in the CatchMark SportsNet Game of the Week.

Hart, which sits alone atop the WMC Rivers Division and tipped off the season beating Lakes Division leader Ludington in overtime on the road, may have gotten more than it bargained for in the visit to Montague.

Hart won the hard-fought game, 45-41, but the Pirates had to rally from an early 9-2 deficit. In fact, they were stuck on two points with under six minutes remaining in the first half.

Junior Abby Hicks did it all for Hart, finishing with 13 points, 10 rebounds, six steals and five assists. For Montague, sophomore Addison Pranger had a great game with 15 points and seven rebounds.

Montague is in the Game of the Week again this Friday, as the Wildcats visit neighboring rival Whitehall. That’s a 6 p.m. tip-off as opposed to the standard 7 p.m.


Ludington and Hart continued their winning ways and both still remain unbeaten on the season.

The Orioles had only one game last week, a 71-29 victory over visiting Orchard View on Tuesday, and improved to 12-0 overall and 6-0 in the WMC Lakes Division. They lead Whitehall by one game in the race for the divisional title. Slick junior point guard David Shillinger scored 26 points in the win over OV.

Meanwhile, Hart kept cruising and bumped its record to 11-0 overall, 6-0 in the WMC Rivers Division — one game ahead of Mason County Central in that divisional race. Last week, the Pirates made quick work of Hesperia (85-31) and Holton (65-20). They were led by their 1-2 punch of triple-double machine Parker Hovey and Blake Weirich.

Ludington hosts Whitehall on Feb. 17, while Hart welcomes Mason County Central on Feb. 23. Still a lot of basketball to play before then.

Adding even more intrigue is the fact that Ludington and Hart are in the same Division 2 district at Big Rapids. That district should be quite entertaining.

Ludington’s David Shillinger poses for a portrait during CatchMark SportsNet Boys Basketball Media Day on Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2022, at CatchMark Technologies in Whitehall, Mich. (Kara Raeth | CatchMark)
Hart’s Parker Hovey poses for a portrait during CatchMark SportsNet Boys Basketball Media Day on Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2022, at CatchMark Technologies in Whitehall, Mich. (Kara Raeth | CatchMark)


For those West Michigan Conference winter sports coaches who are reporting results routinely to, thank you very much! Please continue to do so.

For those who have not been reporting results, we cannot stress enough the importance of doing so. Those scores, stats and highlights help us produce everything we do.

If you notice, there is no bowling or competitive cheer mention in this week’s Catch-Up. That’s because we’re not getting enough coaches to report results in bowling. In competitive cheer, we’re not receiving any results.

We want to give all the sports and athletes their due recognition. Please help us out!

Lead writer for CatchMark SportsNet and Web Services leader for CatchMark Technologies.

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