By Mitchell Boatman
PARK TWP. — The Grand Haven boys basketball team had a nice run to start the season, posting a perfect record after six games.
The Buccaneers led by four points at halftime, but were outscored by 17 in the final two quarters and fell 58-45 to Holland West Ottawa in the O-K Red Conference opener for both teams.
Both teams are now 6-1 overall on the season.
“I thought we played a pretty good first half,” said Grand Haven coach Greg Immink. “The ball was moving, we were getting the ball in transition some. Defensively we were solid.
“The second half was a little different story. They made a lot of shots in the second half and we didn’t. Turnovers were big for us, too.”
Immink is hoping the first loss motivates his team to get drill down on things that need improvement.
“We haven’t felt this yet this year,” he said. “That obviously adds a little extra sting. Hopefully it will be a little extra motivation for us to get focused on the things we need to improve.”
The teams traded baskets in the opening quarter with six lead changes in the opening minutes. The Panthers held a slight 15-13 lead after one, led by Brady Bosma’s eight points. Owen Ross scored the first seven Grand Haven points.
West Ottawa stretched its lead to 20-13 early in the second quarter before the Buccaneers rattled off 11 straight points to lead 24-20. The teams traded baskets heading into the break and Grand Haven led 30-26 at intermission.
The Panthers turned the tide with a run to start the third quarter. The 12-2 burst put them up 38-32 and Grand Haven didn’t get closer than three points the rest of the way.
A pair of Ross buckets at the end of the third quarter brought Grand Haven within 45-41, but West Ottawa’s 9-0 run to open the fourth shut the door on any comeback hopes.
The Bucs were outscored 13-4 in the final eight minutes.
Ross led Grand Haven with 17 points, Drew Sinke tossed in 10 and Nick Stump scored nine.
Bosma led the Panthers with 18 points. Blake Pedersen and Tanner Weigerink each scored 11.