Prep boys basketball roundup: Superior Central falls at Mid Peninsula 62-52

PERKINS – The Mid Peninsula boys snapped a five-game losing streak Thursday night, earning a 62-52 basketball victory over the Superior Central Cougars.

Mid Pen led 49-26 after the third quarter of the Central U.P. Conference match-up.

“Every one of our kids played well, right down the line,” said Mid Pen coach Mark Branstrom. “We played real well defensively, and that made the difference. Superior Central is a very well coached team and has some good ballplayers. They never stopped working hard and shot the lights out for a while (in the fourth quarter).

“I think this will make our kids feel better about coming to practice. We have a lot to learn yet, but we’re going in the right direction.”

Evan Winkelbauer led the Wolverines (2-7 overall, 1-4 CUP) with 22 points and six assists. Damian Richmond and Chad Branstrom added nine points each and Trey Branstrom had seven assists.

“Evan is playing real well,” said coach Branstrom. “He has a lot of responsibility and he’s stepping up. Trey is also coming on. We were doing real well in the backcourt with Evan and Trey.”

Cody Maki scored 20 points and Nick Maki added 12 for the Cougars (2-6 overall, 0-4 league).

Mid Pen held a 37-21 rebounding advantage, with Mitch Barron leading the way with eight.

“Mitch had a real good night on the boards,” said coach Branstrom. “We boxed out well and did some of the things we hadn’t been doing all year. We played well in the second half at Big Bay (in a 75-61 loss) and it carried over tonight.”

The Wolverines hit 26-of-53 field goals and committed 17 turnovers. The Cougars were 20-of-51 from the floor and had 16 miscues.

Mid Pen hosts top-ranked North Central Tuesday. The Cougars visit fifth-ranked Carney-Nadeau Tuesday.


Carney-Nadeau 75,

Republic-Michigamme 41

REPUBLIC – The Wolves led by just five after the first quarter but outscored the Hawks 20-8 in the second to secure a comfortable lead.

Republic-Michigamme was unable to maintain possession of the ball, finishing the night with 26 turnovers, which Carney converted into baskets.

“We pretty much just threw the ball away,” R-M coach Bill Radcliffe said. “We tried to rush it too quick and lost control.”

With the win, the Wolves improve to 7-2 overall and 5-1 in the Skyline, while the Hawks fall to 2-6 and 0-6, respectively.

For Carney-Nadeau, Jason DuPont scored a team-high 22 points, and Keenan Lampinen had 21 on the night.

Marcus Antilla led the Hawks with 13 points, and Philip Koski had nine of Republic’s 22 rebounds.

Carney won the JV game, 70-40.


Iron Mountain 42,

Manistique 30

MANISTIQUE – The Manistique boys took care of the basketball, but had a hard time putting it through the hole Thursday night as they dropped a 42-30 decision to the Iron Mountain Mountaineers.

Manistique committed just five turnovers, but hit just 10-of-32 field goals in the Mid-Peninsula Conference contest.

“I thought we did a good job defensively,” said Emeralds’ coach Todd Kangas. “It probably would have been a little better had we rebounded better on the defensive side. It wasn’t a bad game for us, but somehow we have to find a way to score more points.”

Zach Caudill scored 16 points and Brock Grenier added 13 for the Mountaineers (6-3 overall, 4-2 league).

Tyler Kangas hit 15 points for the Emeralds (0-8 overall, 0-6 M-PC), who trailed 27-20 after the third quarter.

“We had some opportunities in the fourth quarter, but they were able to respond,” said coach Kangas.

The Mountaineers, who also won the jayvee game 41-24, visit second-ranked Negaunee Tuesday. Manistique hosts Newberry Tuesday.


L’Anse 60,

Houghton 46

HOUGHTON – Jimmy Veker had a game to remember Thursday evening against the Houghton Gremlins, and led his L’Anse High boys basketball team to an important win.

In addition to scoring a game-best 22 points, Veker also cracked the 1,000-point career for his career.

“Jimmy has had a great career here,” LHS coach Mike Ostermeyer said after his team’s 60-46 victory at Alumni Gym. “And tonight, he made all the big plays for us. I’m happy he was able to reach this milestone.”

The L’Anse triumph avenged an earlier defeat at the hands of the Gremlins and it created a three-way tie for first in the WestPAC.

“It feels really good to beat a good, quality team like Houghton,” Veker said afterward. “But as far as reaching (the 1,000-point mark) I couldn’t have done it without my teammates …. they got the ball to me in good position.”

Houghton, now 5-2 overall and 2-1 in the league, was led by Eero Niemela’s 16 points. Nate Gockenback was steady with 14 points and 9 rebounds and Trent Keteri tossed in eight points.

L’Anse moved to 6-4 on the season and 2-1 in the WestPAC.