Threes are wild

Gaylord sinks 10 triples in win over Wildcats

News Photo by James Andersen Alpena’s Chris DeRocher, right, falls back as he shoots over Gaylord’s Jared Landrie during the first half of a boys basketball game on Thursday at Alpena High School.

Gaylord’s long-range game caused all kinds of problems for the Alpena boys basketball team on Thursday.

The Blue Devils sank 10 three-pointers on the way to a 63-51 win over the Wildcats in a Big North Conference contest at Alpena High School.

Gaylord made a pair of crucial three-pointers just before halftime and then added seven more in the second half. Alpena (2-2, 0-2 Big North) cut the lead to eight with 5:40 to play, but every time the Wildcats started to rally, Gaylord almost always had an answer from beyond the arc.

“I thought in the second half we kept fighting, we kept battling back, but every time we got it within seven, eight points they hit a three and that was the difference,” Alpena coach John Pintar said. “Give them credit. It was multiple kids too. They stepped up and made big shots all night.”

Jared Landrie paced Gaylord with 17 points and made five triples. Drew Neff added 14 and Jordan Gapinski and Blake Charboneau each added nine.

A tight defensive battle in the first half saw Alpena trailing 20-19 with 1:34 to play, but in the last 44 seconds Landrie and Kyle Putnam both hit from the long line, sending Gaylord to the locker room with a 26-19 lead.

Alpena had plenty of solid looks in the first half, but couldn’t finish at the basket and was given all it could handle by the physical Blue Devils.

“We played way harder than we did last week against Traverse City Central. I thought our effort was closer to matching a Big North opponent, which is what we have to do,” Pintar said. “But inside, around the basket we’d get a lot of looks. We’ve got to make a few more of the those opportunities.”

Gaylord was just getting warmed up and sank two more treys in the first two minutes of the third quarter. Bruz Copping went on a personal 5-0 run to make it 32-27 with 4:49 left in the period, but the Blue Devils caught fire again and drained three more triples before the end of the quarter.

Alpena trailed 40-30 after three quarters, but cut the lead to 44-36 after a block by Kayden Wisniewski led to a basket by Aidan Goike.

Chris DeRocher led Alpena with 19 points, Copping had 13, Goike added 10 and Wisniewski had nine.

Alpena got to within eight, 46-38, after a basket from DeRocher with 5:40 left, but it proved to be the last rally from the Wildcats as Gaylord outscored Alpena 17-11 the rest of the way.

“There were a couple times there in the second half I thought we had a chance to get some momentum and they also responded and it was usually with a three-pointer,” Pintar said.

Gaylord’s JV team defeated Alpena 50-45. Kelley Stark led Alpena with 12 points and Garrett Beaulieu and Tyler Dickinson each added eight.

Alpena’s freshmen team defeated Gaylord 49-1. Keegan Hahn and Remus Rushton led Alpena with eight points each and Chris Dault added six.

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GAYLORD (63): J. Landrie 6 0-1 17; K. Putnam 1 0-0 3; C. Coonrod 2 0-0 6; M. Wilson 0 1-2 1; B. Charboneau 3 3-3 9; C. May 2 0-0 4; D. Neff 6 0-0 14; J. Gapinski 4 1-4 9.

ALPENA (51): K. Wisniewski 3 0-0 9; A. Goike 3 4-6 10; B. Copping 5 2-2 13; E. Alexander 0 0-1 0; C. DeRocher 7 10-10 19.