By Craig Beilfuss

HOLTON–A balanced scoring attack by Muskegon Heights Academy coupled with a stingy defense against the Holton Red Devils was the perfect combination to get the Tigers past the Red Devils 60-45 in a non-conference game on Wednesday evening at Holton.

The game was tied once at 2-2 before Heights went on a 9-0 run.

The Red Devils scored on their second offensive possession in the opening eight minutes but couldn’t get the ball to go through the hoop until the 1:05 mark of the first quarter. Holton head coach Keith Swanson was forced to spend two timeouts during the first four minutes

Holton did manage to close out the first quarter scoring the last five points to cut the Heights lead to 11-7.

The Tigers took total control of the second stanza, going on an 11-0 run through the first four minutes. With a 22-7 lead, Heights finally let Holton get on the board with 3:44 remaining in the half.

The Red Devils closed out on a 8-2 spurt and closed the halftime gap to 24-15.

“We’re growing and growing solid,” said Heights head coach Dalrecus Stewart. “The more we play the better we’ll get.”

Whatever chances Holton might have had in making a comeback were quickly dashed in the third quarter when Heights hit three 3-point shots and increased their lead to 42-24, outscoring the Red Devils 18-9.

“We really struggled early on, said Holton head coach Keith Swanson. “They are long and lengthy and they really got after us on the defensive end.”

The teams combined to shoot 22 free throws in the fourth quarter while the Red Devils held the upper hand with a 21-18 scoring advantage.

Junior JaQuan Mathews had a team-high 16 points for the Tigers. Joining him in double digits

JaKari Edwards tossed in 15 points for the Tigers on Wednesday evening (Photo/Craig Beilfuss

were senior JaKari Edwards with 15 points and junior William Davis tossed in 11 points.

JaQuan Mathews led Heights with 16 points on Wednesday evening (Photo/Craig Beilfuss)

Senior Wyatt Monette led the Holton offense with a team high 16 points. Senior Austin Fowler tossed in 9 points for the Red Devils.

Muskegon Heights improves to 5-2 overall and is 3-0 in the Lakes 8 Activities conference. The Tigers will host the Ludington Orioles on Friday evening who will bring a perfect 4-0 conference record into the contest

Holton drops to 4-1 overall and 2-0 in the CSAA-Silver. The Red Devils will host Hesperia on Friday evening.