Friday Boys Hoops Action
By N3 Sports Team
Area teams went 2-2 Friday night as the Packers made their CSAA Gold debut under long-time Head Coach Pete Zerfas while Newaygo White Cloud and Grant began conference play with Joe Barrette, Bob Jones and Matt McCorkle each in their first year of leading their teams from the bench.
Side note: This Saturday the Lions will face the Red Devils of Holton on the big stage as the opening act for...
...West Michigan’s professional team, the Grand Rapids Drive at the Delta Plex. Game time is 3:30pm.
Fremont 55 Chippewa Hills 45
The Packer cagers introduced themselves to the CSAA Gold with a win on the road against the Warriors to move to 2-0 on the season.
“It was a hard fought game,” said Head Coach Pete Zerfas. “We caught fire in the second quarter to build a good lead by halftime and it never got below 10 points after that.”
The teams were knotted at 7 after the first period but a 22-6 run by the visitors created some distance and the Pack led by as much as 18 during the second half.
Fremont has shown a balanced offensive attack in this young season and it was on display again Friday night as three players hit for double figures led by Sam Kaastra who canned 13. Cooper Kukal led the team off the glass with 14 boards to go with his 11 points while Ryan Geeting hit for 11 points and grabbed an equal amount of rebounds.
The Packers will face Sparta at home on Tuesday before resuming league play Friday when they host the Coyotes of Reed City.
Newaygo 60 Reed City 53
The gymnasium at Reed City often seems to serve as a ‘6th man’ for the Coyotes and the schedule makers weren’t giving the Lions any breaks by having them open the season as well as conference play at the home of their CSAA Gold rivals.
But led by a 17 point, 14 rebound and 5 steal performance by Cam Fisk and 10 points each off the hands of Jamie Pike and Connor Swinehart Newaygo gave Joe Barrette a win in his debut as Varsity Coach.
“Any time we can come away with a win at Reed City we are very happy,” said Coach Barrette. “It is a tough place to play with tough kids.“
Pike also pilfered 6 steals and Swinehart matched his scoring output by pulling down 10 boards to keep the Lions in control of the conference battle.
“This is a great start that we hope to build on” added Coach Barrette.
After hosting the Warriors of Chippewa Hills Friday the Lions will be playing Holton at the Delta-Plex in Grand Rapids Saturday afternoon at 3:30 before the Grand Rapids Drive contest.
Lakeview 62, White Cloud 33.
The Cloud went on the road into Wildcat country Friday night to open conference play but struggled on the offensive end and dropped their second straight game to begin the season.
Buck Seabrook led the Indians with 11 points and Andy Newfer added 9 but it wasn’t enough to keep pace with the Lakeview attack and the Wildcats snared the CSAA Silver win.
“Ball control and putting points on the board have been our trouble spots,” said Indian Head Coach Bob Jones.
White Cloud will travel to Mason County Central Monday before returning home to face Reed City Tuesday night.
Big Rapids 65 Grant 50
The Tigers opened play in the CSAA Gold on the road against talented Big Rapids team led by Demetri Martin who was a huge factor in the Cardinals coming 1 point shy of playing in the finals last season.
The visitors were held to just 5 first quarter points to fall behind early then rallied for 21 points in the second but inconsistent play on the offensive end is no way to compete with the high flying Cardinals and Grant fell short to even their season record at 1-1.
“Tonight wasn't our night,” said Tiger Head Coach Matt McCorkle. “We struggled offensively out of the gates and our shot selection at various points throughout the game was questionable."
“Coach Ingles does a nice job with his guys. Demetri Martin is a special player with a bright future ahead of him."
Martin eclipsed the career 1000 point mark during Friday’s match-up.
Spencer Naffziger fired in a team high 13 points while Shayne Gardner knocked down a dozen points and dished out 3 assists. Tyler Lopez led the Tigers in assists with 5 while hitting for 9 points, Tyler Naffziger added a half dozen points and Carter Chase scored 5. Casey Geers grabbed 5 off the glass to shared the team lead with Spencer Naffziger
“We have a lot to work on defensively,” added Coach McCorkle. “We will look to get back on track next week.”
Grant travels to Kent City Tuesday to face the Eagles before resuming conference play at home Friday against Central Montcalm.