The Grand Haven boys basketball team drew undefeated and No. 1 ranked Muskegon in its Class A district-opener, and the host Big Reds set the tone early in a 53-35 victory.
Muskegon ended the first quarter with a 15-2 lead.
“We had a lot of missed defensive assignments early on, when we should have been helping,” said Grand Haven coach Steve Hewitt. “We gave up offensive rebounds and missed our man. Those just aren’t things you can do against a good team.
“Offensively we were patient, we just couldn’t get into the lane.”
That didn’t matter early in the second quarter, as B.J. Nahal and Connor Grimes hit 3-pointers on the Buccaneers’ first two possessions, cutting the Big Reds’ lead to 15-8.
Grand Haven outscored Muskegon 10-8 in the quarter to go into halftime down 23-12.
“Give them a lot of credit,” Hewitt said of his team. “I thought they battled back. That’s one of the things we stressed. We knew there were going to be streaks because they’re really good.”
Muskegon went into the fourth quarter up 36-21, and Grand Haven got no closer the rest of the way.
Grand Haven will lose seven seniors off this years’ squad, including Searle, who led the Bucs with 10 points on Monday, and Grimes, who added six points.
“It’s something real hard to deal with, but it was a lot of fun growing up with these guys and playing together,” Searle said after the loss. “I’m going to miss it.
“I think it was tough drawing Muskegon with them being No. 1 in the state.”
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