By Ron Rop
Local Sports Journal
MONTAGUE – Montague coach Dave Osborne wanted to get off to a fast start on Monday night against the Fremont Packers.
Because the way Osborne look at it, “everybody knows when you play Fremont they are never far enough behind.”
So it put a smile on the face of the Wildcat coach when his team raced out to a 20-6 lead after the first quarter and put the game away late in a 70-50 victory.
“They shoot 3s with (Mike) Siegel and (Dylan) Krim so you never feel comfortable, but it was a great start,” Osborne said. “I wish we could start every quarter like that.”
But in the middle two quarters, the Packers were able to fight back into contention and actually pull to within 46-43 on an 8-foot jumper from Krim to start the fourth quarter.
But, from there, it was all Montague and senior Brandon Moore, who scored 13 of his 23 points in the final quarter. He also had 11 rebounds. Moore was one of four Montague players to score in double figures. Chase Casebolt added 16 points, eight in each half. Luke VanBoxel played a solid floor game and finished with 13 points, 11 of which game in the first half. Brandon Stine also reached double figures with 10 points. Center James Boerema made his presence felt inside with his 12 rebounds and the eight points he scored.
In the fourth quarter, Fremont got the first bucket on Krim’s jumper, but the Wildcats finished the game with a 24-7 run. That run included two dunks by the high-flying Moore.
“Sometimes our guys still tend to be too passive,” Osborne said. “Once they do turn it on, we can play with anyone. It’s just a matter of turning it on for 32 minutes.”
In the middle two quarters, the Packers outscored the Wildcats 35-26, but just ran out of gas in the final quarter.
“We battled back and played a really good second quarter and third quarter and we got within three in the fourth and we just sort of gassed out,” Fremont coach Pete Zerfas said. “We ran out of gas, we’re a little shorthanded. Our center is out with an injury, we have Dylan Krim fighting back from mono and he’s healthy, but not in physical condition yet.”
Those developments put a lot of pressure on Mike Siegel, who gave it everything he had and finished with a game-high 24 points. He also pulled down 10 rebounds, had five assists and four steals. Mike MacLean added nine points and Krim had eight.
“Siegel gets tired,” Zerfas said. “He’s our point guard right now and he covers their center and that’s a to do.
“The guys battled hard,” Zerfas said. “It was 20 points, but it wasn’t that much of a blowout. We tried to go after the win with 3 minutes to go and it just didn’t work out.”
Fremont is now 4-4 overall. Montague is 8-1.
Montague 70, Fremont 50
Jared Bacon 1 0-0 3, Andrew Zimmerman 1 0-0 2, Jacob Kaastra 0 4-5 4, Mike MacLean 3 0-0 9, Mike Siegel 8 6-8 24, Dylan Krim 4 0-0 8. Totals 17 10-13 50.
Brandon Moore 10 3-8 23, Brandon Stine 4 1-3 10, Luke VanBoxel 6 0-1 13, Chase Casebolt 5 4-5 16, James Boerema 4 0-0 8. Totals 29 8-19 70.
Fremont 6 – 22 – 13 – 9 — 50
Montague 20 – 14 – 12 – 24 — 70
3-pointers: Bacon, MacLean (3), Siegel (2), Stine, VanBoxel, Casebolt (2). Fouled out: none. Technicals: none.