Big second quarter lifts Mustangs

Munising’s Joshua Huotari, center, puts up a shot between Bark River-Harris defenders Nick Javurek, left, and Riley Bray as the Broncos' Carter Zawacki, background, looks on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, at Harris. (Escanaba Daily Press photo by Justin St. Ours)

By JUSTIN ST. OURS

Escanaba Daily Press

HARRIS — The Munising boys basketball team outran the Bark River-Harris Broncos here Saturday 64-50 in a Skyline Central Conference game.

The Mustangs trailed 15-12 after one quarter, but were able to regroup and find a rhythm in the second period. They finished the quarter with 27 points to lead 39-24 at the half.

“The second quarter was what really was the difference,” BR-H coach Mark Zawacki said. “Whenever you get down like that and try to battle back it becomes difficult.”

The Broncos (6-10, 5-9 Skyline) started strong with two triples from leading scorer Riley Bray in the first quarter. He finished with 14 points and kept the Mustangs from running away.

“We’ve been getting in the gym once in awhile,” Munising coach Terry Kienitz said about recent games being postponed due to the weather. “We were a little rusty, but I give Bark River credit. They came out and weren’t giving us anything easy.”

Munising’s Clayton Smith, who finished with 16 points, started the second stanza off nicely, making a layup and sinking a free throw in the first 15 seconds to tie it up. The last minute of the quarter was a shootout as the Broncos’ Nick Javurek hit a jumper and a triple to bring Bark River within 12. However, a last-second trey from Munising’s Jesse Matson, who finished with 15 points, pushed their advantage back to 15 at the break.

The Broncos showed some tenacity to start the second half, holding the Mustangs to three points in the first four minutes. But they also failed to capitalize at the offensive end.

“We try to always set the momentum and get a big push, but they were out-hustling and beating us down the court,” Kienitz said. “We weren’t getting back on defense like we should be.”

Munising (10-3, 8-1 SC) increased its lead to 53-37 to end the third.

Austin Killips was Munising’s leading scorer with 17 points.

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