Negaunee clinches share of M-PC boys basketball title

NEGAUNEE – Negaunee clinched a share of the Mid-Peninsula Conference boys basketball title with a 61-32 victory over visiting Westwood on Wednesday night.

The Miners, now 17-1 overall and 10-0 in the M-PC, can wrap up the championship by defeating their only remaining pursuer, Iron Mountain, at home on Tuesday night. The Mountaineers are 9-2 in league.

On Wednesday, Negaunee raced to a 27-10 halftime lead on Senior Night as Miners coach Mike O’Donnell started five 12th-graders. Tony Zampese took greatest advantage of the opportunity, scoring seven points in the first quarter and finishing with 11.

But the Patriots (3-14, 3-8) whittled the deficit to 11 points during the third quarter.

“Westwood was playing well and we hit a scoring drought,” O’Donnell said. “Westwood was methodical with its offense, and I think we were taking some bad shots, especially from the perimeter.”

He said a timeout calmed and refocused his troops, who soon caught fire, finishing the period on a 10-2 run to take a 43-20 cushion entering the fourth.

Negaunee junior Tyler Jandron led all scorers with 16 points and added five steals, while senior teammate Tanner Uren finished with 12 points, seven assists and five rebounds. Junior Zane Radloff also pulled in five rebounds.

For Westwood, which had won three of its previous four games to break out of a winless campaign, juniors Brad Pennala and Justin Luke each scored seven points while senior Travis Swanson had six.

The Miners also won the JV game, 62-47.