Muskegon Heights boys race to an early lead and down Muskegon Catholic 82-58

By Justin Haggerty
Local Sports Journal

MUSKEGON HEIGHTS – It’s never a good idea to give the Muskegon Heights boys basketball team an early lead.

Muskegon Catholic learned that the hard way on Tuesday.

MCC #23 Lamar Jordan blocks the shot of Heights#1 Antonio Jones photo/ Tim Reilly

MCC #23 Lamar Jordan blocks the shot of Heights#1 Antonio Jones photo/ Tim Reilly

The host Tigers jumped out to a quick 8-0 advantage and cruised to an easy 82-58 victory in a non-league contest.

“We wanted to try to pick the tempo up,” said Muskegon Heights head coach Dale Stewart, whose team improved to 6-3 on the season. “We know they play a real up tempo style, so we figured it would be a high scoring affair.

“For whatever reason, when we get that intensity going, not only can we go deeper, it just seems to sustain us longer.”

MCC Coach Lamar Jordan admitted the rough start made the task tough for his team.

“At the beginning of the game, we get down 8-0, that’s tough especially on the road,” said Jordan, whose team dropped to 8-2. “I thought we had some chances, some pretty easy layups that would have had us right in the game.

MCC #21 Nate Jones battles Heights #2 Pherrius Flowers for the rebound photo/ Tim Reilly

MCC #21 Nate Jones battles Heights #2 Pherrius Flowers for the rebound photo/ Tim Reilly

“When you’re down 8-0, it begins to mess with your psyche a little bit.”

Muskegon Heights dictated the game with a fast pace and led 21-8 after the first quarter.

The Crusaders played better in the second quarter with Christian Martinez scoring eight points.

The Tigers led 39-28 at halftime.

The second half was more of the same with the Tigers outscoring MCC 43-30.

Antonio Jones paced Muskegon Heights with 24 points.

“I’m the senior of the team so I have to lead my team, they’re going to follow me and do what I do,” Jones said. “If I put my head down, they’re going to put their heads down, so if I keep my head up then everything will be good.”

MCC #5 Tommy Scott drives the lane against Heights #2 Pherrius Flowers photo/ Tim Reilly

MCC #5 Tommy Scott drives the lane against Heights #2 Pherrius Flowers photo/ Tim Reilly

Erik VanFossen led the Crusaders with 23 points while Martinez totaled 14.

Both teams are already focused on their next game.

MCC will play Spring Lake Friday in a battle for the lead in the Lakes 8 Conference.

Muskegon Heights plays host to 2014 state semifinalist Benton Harbor on Saturday in a highly anticipated matchup.

“They are as good as advertised, I’ve got to get to the drawing board probably tonight,” Stewart said. “It ought to be a great game. It will bring a tournament feel to some of our younger guys.”

Heights Cheer squad gets ready for the game  photo/Tim Reilly

Heights Cheer squad gets ready for the game photo/Tim Reilly

 

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