Prep girls hoops: Negaunee overcomes Manistique’s rally, wins M-PC opener

NEGAUNEE- What looked early like a rout in the making turned out to be anything but for the Negaunee High School girls basketball team Friday night.

Leading 42-15 late in the first half, the Miners saw visiting Manistique get back to within 49-39 midway through the final quarter before pulling out a 57-41 Mid-Peninsula Conference win at Lakeview Memorial Gymnasium.

“We’ll take the win, though there are some things we have to work on,” NHS head coach Brandon Sager said.

Still without star forward Rosalie Anderson, who’s nursing a right ankle injury, the Miners got at least six points from five players. Aleda Johnson lead the way with 10.

“Rosalie practiced (Thursday), but we’re taking it slow with her,” Sager said, adding his player might not be ready until the Miners host Marquette on Dec. 17.

NHS (1-1 overall, 1-0 M-PC) didn’t need Anderson early Friday night, roaring to a 20-5 first quarter lead.

“We came out of the gates sharp,” Sager said. “We ran our offense and worked the ball around.”

Manistique head coach Kelley Spettel said her team couldn’t do anything right early.

“We didn’t play any defense, which really cost us,” she said. “We dug ourselves a hole so deep we couldn’t claw all the way back.”

Negaunee took the 27-point lead with a minute left in the second quarter before settling for a 43-19 halftime advantage behind seven points from Alexa Olgren.

“We knew we had to go hard (early),” Olgren said. “We worked together as a team and worked the ball.”

Spettel said she had words with her players at intermission.

“I chewed them out good,” she said. “I told them they’d better give a better effort or it would be an 80-20 game.”

Her Emeralds took her words to heart, scoring the first 10 points of the third quarter, four by Breanna Bosanic. She led Manistique (0-2, 0-1) with 10 points.

“We stopped running our offense, were sloppy and just fell apart,” Sager said of his team being outscored 14-4 in the quarter.

“We weren’t getting back on defense, either. I don’t know if we were tired or what.”

With the score 49-39 Negaunee, Johnson scored twice on drives to the basket and Olgren hit a hook shot to put the Miners comfortably in front, 55-39, with three minutes to play.

“Johnson has a lot of energy. She’s like a little water bug out there” Sager commented of his freshman point guard. “I almost have to slow her down.

“She’s going to be a heckuva player.”

Negaunee won the junior varsity game, 52-32.