Agates stop Cook County in North Shore rivalryTwo Harbors returned the favor to Cook County Tuesday night in Polar League basketball action, stopping the Vikings on their home court 59-52.
By: Forrest Johnson, Lake County News Chronicle
Two Harbors returned the favor to Cook County Tuesday night in Polar League basketball action, stopping the Vikings on their home court 59-52.
Cook County won the earlier contest in Two Harbors but this time the Agates were ready to play a tough physical game with their North Shore rivals. The win ended a 13-game winning streak by Cook County.
“The seniors stepped up and played extremely physical and won the battles around the court,” said Two Harbors coach Jamie Otterblad. “We knew it would be a tough game but we played smart, outrebounded them and put our bodies on the line. We returned the favor on their floor.”
Otterblad said his club has responded with different players stepping up and taking a pivotal role in games.
“Last night Joss Highmark really worked hard and came through for us with 12 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists,” said Otterblad. “He had a good game. The team had a good game.”
The Agates jumped out to a 28-19 lead at the half and had a nine-point lead in the waning seconds before Cook County knocked in a couple points to pull the game a little closer in the scorebook.
“We were really able to spread the floor out and we had pin-point passing and that opened up the lane for some nice layups,” said Otterblad. “Everybody really played well.”
Fordes Lodin led the way with 22 points and 10 rebounds. Matt Bruley added 9 to go along with 6 rebounds. Ryan Guentzel and Alec Fuentes each had 6 while Eric Magnuson and Joel Wuorio had 2 apiece.
Last Friday, the Agates handed the Golden Bears an 85-59 loss. Lodin poured in 32 points to lead the way and Guentzel had his biggest night of the season with 17.
“We got out to an early lead by playing an aggressive man-to-man defense and that led to some fast break baskets,” said Otterblad. “We were able to create turnovers. Our defense has been giving us some good chances to score.”
It appears as though the Agates will likely host an opening round Section 7AA playoff game next week. The Agates finish the regular season on Friday at Mesabi East.