Sebbas leads Hancock past L’Anse

Paul Peterson photo Hancock's Maija Sebbas releases a jump shot during Monday's Class C district tourney game versus L'Anse. Sebbas scored 31 points to lead her team to a 54-43 win.

HANCOCK — Maija Sebbas wasn’t about to let her team lose in a opening round Class C district tourney game Monday night.

The Hancock High senior standout poured in a career-high 31 points to lead the Bulldogs to a 54-43 win over the L’Anse Purple Hornets.

“No, that would have been a bad way to end the season,” said Sebbas, who also surpassed the 1,000-point mark for her career in the contest. “We talked about it before the game and we were pretty focused.”

Hancock coach Jack Johnson commended Sebbas for playing “a complete game.”

“Maija (Sebbas) did everything well tonight. She shot it, passed it and played good defense,” Johnson noted. “It was a typical game for her.”

The win, the Bulldogs 11th in 20 tries this season, moves them into the district championship game Wednesday at Calumet at 7 p.m..

Johnson said the tall Copper Kings, who have ended Hancock’s season the last two years, are a familiar foe.

“We pretty much know what they do,” he said. “We know we have to come out strong and put some pressure on them.”

In last night’s game, the Crimson and Gold stormed to a quick 10-2 lead as Sebbas took care of the 1,000-point business just three minutes into the game.

LHS skipper Scott Lloyd said his team had a solid game plan but couldn’t make any shots early on.

“I can’t remember when we shot that poorly,” Lloyd said. “If you don’t make your shots, a team like Hancock is going to make it tough on you.”

With a 13-9 lead after one period, HCHS upped the margin to 26-13 by halftime. Sebbas had 15 points at the break.

With senior Alexis Francois scoring eight points in the third frame, the Purple Gang kept pace and were down by a 43-27 margin by the end of the quarter.

But after edging to within nine points early in the final stanza at 49-40, L’Anse was forced to foul.

Jordan Pertile, D’Andra Kero and Taylor Sebbas all canned key charity tosses down the stretch.

In addition to her 31 points, Maija Sebbas also had four steals, four assists and eight rebounds.

“She (Sebbas) just sort of took over control of the game,” Lloyd said. “She does all the little things out there.”

Kero was next in line with nine points. While scoring five points, Pertile drew the praise of her coach for a good defensive job on usually high-scoring Bailey Froberg, who was limited to five points.

“Jordan did a good job of checking Froberg,,”Johnson said. “That was a big key for us.”

Francois had a strong game for 8-13 LHS, scoring 15 points and nabbing 10 rebounds.

“Alexa played well,” Lloyd said. “We just didn’t get a whole lot of offense from our other scorers.”

Taylor Brown added seven points for the losers.

Maija Sebbas said playing Calumet will be a tough task.

“It will be really tough, but the main thing is that we’re still alive in the tourney,” she said. “We’ll put up a fight.”

L’Anse 9 4 14 16 – 43

Hancock 13 13 17 11 – 54

L’ANSE — Brown 7, Mattson 4, Francois 15, Dix 6, Jorgenson 2, Froberg 5, Rice 2. Keinz 2. FT: 7-14; Rebounds: 25 (Francois 10); Fouls: 16; Fouled out: Froberg; 3-point FG: Brown 1, Mattson 1.

HANCOCK — Brooks 2, M. Sebbas 31, Kero 9, T. Sebbas 6, Pertile 5, Heinonen 1. FT: 17-28; Rebounds: 25 (M. Sebbas 10); Fouls: 15; Fouled out: None; 3-point FG: M. Sebbas 3, Kero 1, Pertile 1.