|1/2/2020 3:49:00 PM|
North Branch falls to Kasson-
Mantorville for fourth loss in a row
Kasson-Mantorville 66, North Branch 61
The Vikings had only one match up over the holiday break, eschewing the traditional holiday tournament schedule for a little bit more of a competitive break.
They took on Kasson Mantorville at home on Friday, December 27, and the KoMets took a 66-61 win home with them in a game of many runs.
North Branch started out up 6-0 with back-to-back three pointers, but the KoMets proceeded to go on a 32-12 run to take a big lead. The Vikings weren’t going to go quietly in their own building, and they ended up going on a 24-8 run into the early parts of the second half, giving them a 42-40 lead.
The game went back and fourth for a few minutes in what was the only real even spot, but Kasson-Mantorville ended the game on a 21-11 run to give them the final tally.
“I give our guys a ton of credit, we fought hard and battled despite shots not falling….at all,” Head Coach Alex Kuhlman said. “We went 19-of-65 from the field. With cold shooting like that, it is amazing we were in the game until the final seconds.”
Logan Murphy led North Branch with 15 points. Trevor Johnson had 14 points and seven rebounds, and Drew VanEerden had 14 points. Carson Klein pitched in eight points and Carter Whitman had seven points and nine rebounds. Kuhlman also noted that sophomore Gabe Huset had his best game of the year, despite not stuffing the stat sheet.
Despite this being North Branch’s fourth loss in a row after starting the season 3-0, Kuhlman thinks the boys are on the brink of some very positive results.
“Outside of the second half against Grand Rapids and to a lesser extent the second half against Irondale, we have been extremely competitive all season,” he said. “In three of our losses we held slim leads in the second half but just weren’t able to close out games. There is something to be said about learning how to win (as players and coaches). We will get better at this throughout the year.”