Sophomore fitting nicely into Evart varsity lineup


EVART — It didn’t take long for Robbie Tapling to fit into the varsity lineup for the Evart boys basketball team.

Tapling, a sophomore, was brought to the varsity from the JVs recently prior to the game with McBain Northern Michigan Christian. He made the winning shot in a 55-54 win over NMC. In the next game on Feb. 3, he scored 19 points in a 64-55 loss to Vestaburg. In games against Manistee and Beal City, he had 10 and seven points.

Tapling recalls being very nervous going into the NMC game.

“We broke their press on that last play,” he said. “All I remember is putting it up. It was a wide open layup.”

The day before the NMC game, he was told he was moving up to the varsity.

“I was really nervous,” he said. “I played a lot of the game. I didn’t start. Once I actually started playing, I relaxed. Sitting on the bench was nerve racking.”

On the junior varsity, Tapling has been a scorer.

“That’s kind of what they needed me for (on the varsity),” he said. “It’s my defense and my scoring.”

His scoring is “from all over,” said Tapling, who also shoots 3-pointers, but said driving is also a strong part of his shooting.

Tapling has been starting at a shooting guard.

“Everything is faster, it’s a whole different game than JVs,” he said.

Evart entered this week at 6-7.

“We have to put our minds back into it,” he said. “We have to keep focusing. It starts on the defensive end. When our defense is clicking usually our offense is clicking, so we can put the ball in the basket.

“We want to finish the year out strong with a winning record going into district play and hopefully bring home a district title.”