Kingsford makes it tough for Negaunee
By RON DEUTER
KINGSFORD – Kingsford’s defense showed vast improvement here Tuesday evening, but a struggling offense allowed unbeaten Negaunee to escape with a 46-37 non-conference boys basketball victory.
“Kingsford did a nice job of changing defenses, scrapping,” Negaunee coach Mike O’Donnell said. “They fought well, and they hit some shots in the second half. They made it tough for us. We got challenged again tonight.”
Tyler Jandron’s 23 points led all scorers. The Miners’ senior guard scored 13 of those in the fourth quarter, hitting all but one of his eight free throws in the final frame.
A seven-point run to close the second quarter helped the visiting Miners open a 14-point halftime lead, but the Flivvers kept Negaunee to just one bucket in the third quarter to stay within striking distance in the final frame.
“Defense was the whole focus, defense and rebounding,” Kingsford coach Dan Olkkonen said. “We really had to step up, and I think we did a good job with both.”
Kingsford, led by Dan Harrington’s 14 points, opened the second half with a 7-0 run, not allowing Negaunee a point until Jay Lori got a lay-up to go with a minute left in the stanza.
Cole Tengesdahl then hammered a three off the glass at the quarter buzzer to bring the Flivvers within six entering the fourth.
Kingsford closed to within five of the Miners twice, but could get no closer. A drive by Harrington with 4:25 to play made it 29-24 Negaunee. Later, with 2:30 to go, a steal by Noah Voss led to a quick two by Jack Glodowski to make it 36-31.
While Jandron provided most of the answers to Kingsford’s push, the Miners also got big buckets from Zane Radloff and Robert Loy in the fourth. Negaunee was without starter Eric Lori after the senior guard turned an ankle near the end of practice Monday.
“It was tough to prepare (with the injury happening at the end of practice,” O’Donnell said. “It threw us for a little bit of a loop. But we had a lot of people come in and play important minutes, give us positive contribution and do enough to get us a victory on the road.”
Jay Lori finished with 10 points for Negaunee. Loy had eight.
Lucas Jennings provided eight points for Kingsford, including a couple of second-half threes. Glodowski finished with seven.
We just had a tough time scoring, especially early,” Olkkonen said. “We had shots at the basket, shots we wanted. They just didn’t go in.
“It hurts to have another loss, but we made positive steps. I was proud of us on defense tonight. The kids really fought hard.”
Negaunee went to 3-0 with the win.
Kingsford took both the freshman (57-42) and junior varsity (54-42) contests. Brandon Kowalkowski scored 14 and Chris Roell added 13 for the Flivvers in the JV game.
Kingsford (0-3) hosts Westwood Friday.
Negaunee10 14 2 20 – 46
Kingsford3 7 10 17 – 37
NEGAUNEE: Radloff 5, Jandron 23, J. Lori 10, Loy 8. FT: 12-14. F: 13.
KINGSFORD: Jennings 8, Voss 4, Harrington 14, Tengesdahl 4, Glodowski 7. FT: 7-9. F: 14.
FGs – N: 17-41 (3-pt: 0-14); K: 13-43 (3-pt: 4-13). 3-pt FGs – N: None. K: Jennings (2), Harrington, Tengesdahl. Reb – N: 25 (J. Lori 10); K: 18 (Harrington 5).