Flivvs overwhelm Mountaineers

By BURT ANGELI

Sports Writer

IRON MOUNTAIN – Kingsford, seeking improvement from its first girls basketball meeting with Iron Mountain, met those goals on both ends of the floor Friday.

Four Flivvers scored nine points apiece and the Mountaineers failed to break double-digits in any quarter as Kingsford posted a 48-22 decision.

In the first week of January, Kingsford turned back Iron Mountain 45-37.

“This game, as opposed to the first one, we didn’t do a very good job on defense,” Flivver coach Mike Cross said. “My biggest thing was we had to get better on defense. I thought we did a real nice job.”

Kingsford fired away for 11 straight points before Iron Mountain junior guard Alyssa Khor drained a triple at the 1:36 mark of the first quarter. The halftime difference was 20.

“We were in that ‘here we go again’ situation,” Mountaineer coach Ginger Moore said. “It seems before we know it we struggle to score and we never recover.

“Kingsford has a good team. They’re well prepared. They were more aggressive than we were, without a doubt.”

Annika Erickson, Amber Larson, Maria Wiltzius and Courtney Qualley each scored nine points for the Flivvers. Anna Shanks chipped in five.

“Offensively, we worked the ball a lot better,” Cross said. “We weren’t as careless as last time. We tried to work it inside for Amber to get some points.”

However, the Flivvers seemed to forget that strategy early by launching three-pointers and making three in the first half.

“At the beginning, the first girl to touch it launched it,” Cross said. “It’s frustrating when you work all week on trying to look for the inside.

“It’s a fine line when they kick it out to you. That’s when we want you to knock it down.”

Kingsford forced 11 first-half turnovers but Moore thought her Mountaineers handled the pressure reasonably well.

“They’re definitely at the top,” said Moore when asked to compare the pressure defenses her Mountaineers face every night. “Because the game was blown open early, I don’t think it was as much pressure as we would have faced had it been a tight game.

“The pressure didn’t really seem to bother us.”

Despite a 20-point lead in the fourth quarter, Cross called a couple timeouts to instruct the reserves.

“The second team late in the game they don’t get a whole lot of coaching,” Cross said. “You still need them to work on things and execute a little better.”

Cassie Feira’s six points topped the Mountaineers, who aren’t giving up the ship.

“We have a week left in the regular season,” Moore said. “We want to go out on positive note. Positive means were looking to play harder and get better.

“We have tournaments. We have next year. We can’t put our head in the sand.”

Iron Mountain (1-16) visits Manistique Monday and Kingsford (8-9) hosts Gladstone Tuesday.

The Flivvers, behind Mariana Bianco’s 12 points, pinned the first loss on the Mountaineer jayvees, 32-30. Olivia Truscott led the Mountaineers with nine.

Kingsford’s frosh downed Iron Mountain 65-30. Sabrina Wickman, 13 points, and Abby Meneguzzo, 12, paced the Flivvers. Paige Fortner had 10 for the Mountaineers.

Kingsford 13 18 8 9 – 48

Iron Mountain 3 8 6 5 – 22

KINGSFORD: Walters 3, Lindeman 2, Shanks 5, Erickson 9, Tresedder 2, Larson 9, Witzius 9, Qualley 9. FT: 11-19. F: 9.

IRON MOUNTAIN: Khor 3, Gendron 2, Geyser 2, Feira 6, McCole 3, Pirkola 4, Ketcham 2. FT: 3-4. F: 15. Fouled out: Herman (3:10, 4th).

3-point FG: Khor, Erickson, Wiltzius, Qualley. FG made: Kingsford 17, Iron Mountain 9.