Season Preview: FGR girls’ basketball team off to strong start (SEE WLAA PHOTO GALLERY)

So far, so good for the Father Gabriel Richard girls’ basketball team.

Let’s rephrase that. So far, so great for the Fighting Irish.

FGR is off to a 3-0 start on the recently opened season with convincing wins over Pinckney (45-31) and Olivet (52-31). They added to the win column with a 45-32 win over Macomb Lutheran North (see story link below) on Saturday. Coach Tim Cain, now in his second season with the Irish, is pleased with the direction his club is heading and the potential they have shown in this first week on the court.

“We are able to play inside out,” says Cain, who stresses strong defense and taking care of the basketball. “Our defense is definitely behind right now without contact practices but eventually it will be a strength.”


Cain wants his club to work on shooting and find some consistency on the offensive end. With their defense, if the Irish can score they have a great chance to achieve a few of their goals which include a District title.

The Irish went 13-9 last season and finished third in the always tough Catholic League. They lost in a District final.

Top returning players include seniors Rileigh Garbarz and Savannah Wing and junior Lainey Garbarz.

Rileigh Garbarz, a four-year varsity player, has been All-Catholic the past two seasons. The 5-9 forward averaged 12 points and nine rebounds last year and racked up 14 double-doubles. She also had a team-high 90 steals.

Rileigh also is an outstanding soccer player and will play at Saginaw Valley State next season.

Savannah Wing is another four-year varsity player for FGR. The 5-7 guard shot 36 percent from three-point territory a year ago and is one of the team’s top defenders. She will play softball next year at Kent State.

Lainey Garbarz is starting her third season on varsity. The 5-9 forward was All-Catholic last year after averaging eight points and six rebounds. She also led the team in blocks.

Top newcomers for the Irish include sophomore guard Mikaela Waroway and junior forward Mary Kate McAuliffe.


Girls Basketball: Half-court shot (see video) helps lead Irish over Lutheran North