LINCOLN-It didn't seem to matter what the Alcona boys basketball team did on Friday against Saginaw Buena Vista.
There wasn't much the Tigers could do to slow the Knights down.
Armondi Rogers and Tyrell Bridgewater scored 17 points each and the Knights topped Alcona 65-43 at Alcona High School.
News Photo by James Andersen
Alcona’s Jared Steiner (14) drives past Saginaw Buena Vista defenders Armondi Rogers (5) and Jalen Walraven, left, during a boys basketball game on Friday at Alcona High School.
Alcona (7-2) only trailed by seven at the half, 27-20, but once the third quarter began Buena Vista took the game over for good.
"They were athletic and I felt they did a better job of getting on the boards. Our transitional defense (wasn't good)," Alcona coach Tim Somers said. "In the first half they had 16 points off of lay-ups. You can't do that when you play a quality team like that."
Using the quickness of players like Rogers and Crandale Brown and the size of Bridgewater inside, the Knights wore down Alcona's defense and didn't allow the Tigers many second-chance opportunities on offense. The Tigers were outscored 18-10 in the third quarter and 20-13 in the final period.
Defensively, the Knights shutdown Alcona guard Jared Steiner, limiting the Tigers' floor general to just five points.
Trenton LaVergne led Alcona with 10 points and Dawson Forsythe and Carson Jamieson each had eight, but Knights' coach Tory Jackson's primary objective was stopping Steiner, who often found himself double-teamed by Buena Vista defenders.
"They did a really good job of guarding us. They did a good job of guarding Jared," Somers said. "The coach and I talked before the game and he told me he was going to come out and put a lot of pressure on him."
Alcona trailed 10-9 after the first quarter, but had some trouble keeping pace with the Knights after that. A trey by Thomas early in the second quarter pushed the Knights' lead to 10, 19-9 and the closest Alcona got after that was five points. The last time came with five minutes left in the third quarter after a basket by Jamieson made the score 31-26.
After that Rogers took over and finished the third quarter with 10 points.
Things didn't improve much for Alcona in the fourth quarter as Buena Vista limited the Tigers to just two field goals. Alcona went 9-for-10 at the free-throw line during the last quarter, but it wasn't enough to make up for what had grown to a large deficit by that point. Buena Vista took its pick dishing the ball inside to Bridgewater or passing the ball around the perimeter to several players who added to the Knights' lead.
Somers said the game was a good learning experience for his young team that the Tigers can hopefully grow from.
"It's a work in progress with this very young group and sometimes I think we forget about that," Somers said. "We'll keep working at it and hopefully we get better at it."
Buena Vista's JV team defeated Alcona 53-41. Demetrius Frierson led Buena Vista with 19 points. Jason Steiner paced the Tigers with 14 points and Issac Dubuque added 10.
SAGINAW BUENA VISTA (65): Bridgewater 8 1-3 17; Coleman 1 0-0 2; Thomas 4 0-0 9; Rogers 8 1-2 17; Walraven 3 0-0 7; Brown 6 0-1 13.
ALCONA (43): LaVergne 4 5-5 10; Steiner 1 0-0 5; Norling 1 0-0 2; Ritchie 2 0-0 4; Forsythe 1 6-6 8; Jamieson 4 0-2 8.