That was the case for the Fruitport boys basketball team on Tuesday night against Mona Shores, as they tried to snap an 11-game losing streak after starting the season with a promising 2-1 mark.
The Trojans couldn’t find any positive momentum early and the Sailors took advantage on their way to a 58-27 road win at Fruitport High School.
Mona Shores used an aggressive dribble-drive to get to the rim early and often at the start of the game and opened up a 17-3 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The Sailors continued to pour it on in the second quarter with silky outside shooting, offensive rebounds and a few trips to the free throw line to take a 43-11 lead at halftime.
The third quarter was a fast-paced affair, with both teams attempting to break the press with limited results for either side. Entering the final quarter of play, Mona Shores held a 55-20 lead.
The Trojans won the fourth quarter with an inspired defensive effort and some hustle plays in the transition game to outscore the Sailors 7-3 and leave the game with something to grow on.
“We lost to these guys by eight points a month ago, and that was a tight game. It’s disappointing to come out and play the way we did tonight,” said Fruitport head coach Steve Erny. “I think a lot of it was effort related and communication was pretty poor early on.
“The guys know that they need to get better, and we’re working toward that. Our main goal is to win games, but another goal is to play a better brand of basketball than we played tonight.”
Jarvis Walker scored 19 points to lead the Sailors (6-8, 4-4 O-K Black), while Kolbe Trovinger added 11 and Davarius Carter chipped in with nine.
Hunter Gannon scored 12 points to lead the Trojans (2-13, 0-8 O-K Black), while Cam Oleen and Marcelo Conklin each added five.
“Hunter Gannon played hard tonight, and he had to play extended minutes because we had two guys out with an illness,” Erny continued. “The guys don’t give up, but we need to do a better job of getting after it early on when the game is still up for grabs. We’ve got heart and toughness, but we have to play hard, together and smart like we talk about every day at practice. We didn’t do that enough tonight.”
Fruitport hosts Kenowa Hills (5-10, 2-5 O-K Black) on Friday, before traveling to Grand Rapids Union (8-6, 4-2 O-K Black) next week.
“We just need to get back to the practice court and sharpen our skills and get better. We’ve got a long way to go, but we have to keep our heads up and stay positive,” Erny added. “We know we can compete in this league, but we’ve got to do the little things correctly in order to win games.
“The light at the end of the tunnel is that we’re working our way through this tough conference, and getting tested. We’ve got some district opponents that we know we can compete with if we can continue to improve, so that’s our main focus now.”