Muskegon Big Reds crack national ranks, listed 49th in USA Today

Local Sports Journal

MUSKEGON — The Muskegon Big Reds boys basketball team has cracked into USA Today’s top 50 national high school rankings.

Muskegon received the 49th spot in the Jan. 7 rankings with 50 points for its 4-0 start. The latest victory came Jan. 4 when the Big Reds turned back Chicago Curie Metropolitan High School 73-66 in overtime at the Muskegon Basketball Showcase.

Curie, now 10-1, had been ranked 12th and jumped up to eighth in USA Today’s rankings in spite of the loss to Muskegon. Curie recentrly beat Chicago Simeon (No. 30) to win the Pontiac tournament and went on to play Muskegon.

The Kansas bound Cliff Alexander had to sit out in Curie’s matchup against Muskegon after being ejected for a pair of technical fouls earlier this season.

The boys Super 25 in USA Today Sports has Montverde (Fla.) Academy in the top spot with a 14-0 record, Mater Dei, of Santa Ana, Calif., is second with a 14-0 record also.

Muskegon will return to action Friday, Jan. 10, when it plays a non-league game against one of its oldest opponents, the Grand Haven Buccaneers.

Friday’s schedule has Muskegon playing at Grand Haven in the girls varsity game at 6 p.m. The girls’ varsity game will be the first for Grand Haven since its 57-game winning streak was snapped by Mona Shores on Jan. 3. The 57-game streak dated back to Dec. 2011.

Muskegon girls are 4-2 and Grand Haven is 6-1 going into the matchup.

Grand Haven’s old school record for most victories in a row was 56 by its baseball team in the early 1960s. That mark also ranked as the longest unbeaten streak in any varsity sport at both the school and area until the Lady Buccaneers extended their victory string to 57 on Dec. 28, 2013, by beating Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central.

The boys’ varsity game between Muskegon (4-0) and Grand Haven (2-3) is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m.

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