Flivvers run by Nordics
KINGSFORD – Caleb Harrington’s 19 points led Kingsford in a 51-33 senior night victory over North Dickinson Thursday at the Flivver Gymnasium.
“For senior night, we wanted to make sure they all got a lot of time,” Flivvers coach Dan Olkkonen said. “Our rotations don’t get that deep sometimes, and these kids all work so hard and deserve time. I thought they all played really well, especially in the first half.”
Harrington scored eight of his 19 in the first quarter, as Kingsford jumped up 10-0 on the Nordics.
“It’s been a problem this season where we start the game, and it’s 10-0,” Nordics head coach Chris Mattson said. “That’s got to be the fourth time that’s happened this year, down double digits instantly.
“We didn’t freak out at that time, but we did have to expend a lot of energy keeping the game close in the first half.”
Kingsford led by nine at the break, but the Nordics, spurred by a couple of inside buckets by Matt Schultz and their best defensive stretch of the ballgame, put in seven of the first eight points of the third quarter to get as close as two at 25-23.
But a Harrington triple on the other end put an abrupt halt to the Nordic run.
The Flivvers – suddenly forcing North Dickinson into a rash of turnovers – then fed Aidan Wienke for a couple of quick layups. Tyler Schaut drilled one from deep, and by the end of third, the Flivvers were back up by 10.
The Flivvers continued to pour it on in the opening minutes of the fourth, scoring the first 10 points of the frame. A lay-in by Dalton Allen capped what turned out to be a 20-2 push, and a 20-point lead.
Cody Berg, leading North Dickinson with 14 points, finished strong with six in the final quarter, but the game was well over by that point.
“My team isn’t built to come back from behind,” Mattson said. “We have to grind out games. We’re not as offensively talented as other teams in the U.P., but we can do some things defensively, and we did show that in the third quarter.
“Give (Kingsford) credit. They didn’t panic. They took control of the game. Once they started getting hot, the flood gates opened.”
Wienke finished with eight for the Flivvers. Allen scored nine.
Kingsford finished the regular season 14-5. The Flivvers will host Gladstone in a district contest Monday night.
“Defensively, to hold any team to 33 points is an accomplishment,” Olkkonen said. “We made some changes from the first time we played them and did a good job on their big three. I’m proud of the kids, they scrapped hard. It was a fun game for them.”
North Dickinson (7-13) opens district play at home Wednesday, facing either Hannahville or Bark River-Harris.
N. Dickinson 5 11 9 8 – 33
Kingsford 14 10 11 16 – 51
ND: Berg 14, Schultz 8, Hruska 4, Pekarek 3, O’Neil 2, Clark 2. FT: 3-11. F: 13.
K: C. Harrington 19, Allen 9, Wienke 8, Tengesdahl 5, Michaud 4, Schaut 3, D. Harrington 2, Swanson 1. FT: 9-14. F: 7.
FGs – ND: 14-46; K: 20-45. 3-pt FGs – ND: Berg (2); K: C. Harrington, Schaut. Reb – ND: 29 (Berg 6, Schultz 6); K: 33 (Wienke 7).