Gladstone Braves shoot past Ishpeming boys basketball team

Gladstone’s Brad Spindler, left, goes up for a layup against Ishpeming’s Dondre Yohe during their game on Tuesday night, Jan. 24, 2017, at Gladstone. (Escanaba Daily Press photo by Avery Bundgaard)

GLADSTONE — Gladstone caught fire in the third quarter Tuesday night to defeat Ishpeming 69-48 in a high school boys basketball game played at the Braves’ gym.

Gladstone (7-2) made 12 of 14 (86 percent) shots and pushed a nine-point halftime lead to 29 heading into the fourth quarter.

Hematite coach Anthony Katona pointed to ball control as a point of emphasis where his team needs to improve.

“We didn’t take care of the ball totally the whole game,” he said. “Their pressure got to us as the game went along.”

Junior Hart Holmgren led Ishpeming (4-6) with 22 points, while junior Brad Spindler led the Braves with 16 points.

“Hart was pretty solid, especially at the start of the game,” Katona said. “We couldn’t really get anything going offensively. He came up key for us, hitting some big shots and started getting us going.”

Gladstone opened the game with a 13-2 run, using a pressure defense to take a 19-8 lead heading into the second.

“We wanted to trap the ball and that creates turnovers for us,” GHS coach Clayton Castor said. “We were able to do that and get some easy run outs.”

Things slowed down in the second quarter as the Hematites outscored Gladstone by two.

The Braves took a 29-20 halftime lead while shooting 9 of 21 (43 percent) and a perfect 7 of 7 at the free-throw line.

After Gladstone’s big third quarter, Ishpeming controlled the fourth quarter as it cut a 29-point lead to 21 by game’s end.

“Our guys aren’t going to give up,” Katona said. “They worked hard the whole game. We’re a work in progress right now and we’re getting better each game. That fourth quarter definitely shows that our guys aren’t giving up and we’re still working.”

The Hematites won the JV game, 61-56.