Ramblers notch key win over Manton

January 11, 2018

by Ben Murphy
Sports Writer

There is still a long ways to go but the McBain boys basketball team put itself in good position early on in the Highland Conference championship race. The Ramblers, serving as hosts to Manton, picked up a crucial 66-56 in the usual heated contest between the two strong teams.

“This was a great example of playing basketball the McBain way,” head coach Bruce Koopman said. “Every day we work on defense, rebounding and executing our offense as a team. This win puts us in the drivers seat for a conference championship and solidifies the system that I teach every year every day.”

The Ramblers, who have now won 52-straight regular season games, carried a 17-7 lead after the first quarter, but saw the gap trimmed to 32-27 by half-time.

The Ramblers pushed their lead back to double digits at 43-33 entering the fourth quarter and never saw their lead get smaller than six the rest of the game.

“This team is playing very well right now and perhaps still has a high ceiling,” Koopman said. “These boys come to practice every day and with a great work ethic and desire to get better. There were a lot of positives like the mental focus we played with, the energy and the depth of our team. Every guy who played contributed on both ends of the floor.”

Pacing the victors was Seager Wiltzer with 20 points, Nic Rodenbaugh netted 16 points, Garrett VerBerkmoes had 10 points, Jarret Koopman had seven and Andrew Sikkema had eight points off the bench.

McBain 6-0 overall, 2-0 Highland) hosts Lake City tonight (Friday), hosts Cadillac on Tuesday and hosts McBain Northern Michigan Christian in a cross-town battle on Thursday.

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