Lady Broncos put Jets under pressure

HARRIS – The press was in full effect on Monday as Bark River-Harris used their pressure to run past North Central 75-32 in a CUP/Skyline Conference girls basketball match-up.

Broncos head coach Joel Schultz, whose team led 39-19 at the half, said the first half pressure helped set the pace after the break as his team wrapped up their regular season.

The Broncos used their 1-3-1 zone press to force 12 third quarter turnovers, resulting in fast break lay-ups on the offensive end. Seven players scored in the third for BR-H as they took a 58-26 advantage into the fourth.

North Central head coach Tyler Swanson said Bark River’s game-plan is no secret, it’s just a matter of executing against them.

“They’re going to pressure you, that’s what Bark River is known for, so you know it’s coming. it’s just a matter of, we can’t turn the ball over,” Swanson said. “When we get lazy and make long passes, they’re going to jump on them and they’re going to get transition points off of them. It comes down to execution and that’s what it is.”

The Jets played a 2-3 zone in the first half in hopes of slowing the Broncos attack. With a comfortable lead in the third quarter, BR-H held the ball so North Central came out of their zone and played man. Broncos head coach Joel Schultz said the fast pace benefited his team.

“I felt the tempo was appropriate and I think whenever we’re playing that type of up-and-down game and we can get into the 70’s then we’re going to have a good chance against North Central,” Schultz said.

“Some young kids played well tonight, we’re just a tough match-up for them. I don’t think they’re as bad as what they play us.”

Eight players scored for the balanced Broncos who were led by Hannah Starnes. The sophomore guard poured in a game-high 13 points. It was the last regular season home game for senior Kortney Jenshak who netted eight points. The low-post combo of Caitlyn Frazer and Mackenzie Lund added 12 and 11 points respectively.

“Frazer had foul trouble the whole game but she had some really nice rebound put-backs and Mackenzie Lund just did what we needed her to do, hang around the rim and if she gets her hands on the ball stick it in,” Schultz said.

Bark River’s persistent attack in the paint paid off as they knocked down 23-of-29 free throws and fouled out North Central’s leading scorers Morgan and Baylee Wells.

Swanson said the mistakes added up tonight but noted the importance to learn from the game and move on.

“It’s one of those we’ve got to take it to heart and be able to realize our mistakes and fix our mistakes so they don’t compound on themselves and we don’t keep making the same ones over and over,” he said. “If we can do that we’ll be okay.”

Bark River-Harris finishes its regular season campaign at 13-7 overall, 9-2 in the CUP and 6-5 in the Skyline. The Broncos open district play Monday at home against Mid Peninsula. North Central drops to 7-12 overall, 7-6 in the CUP and 5-6 in the Skyline. The Jets are back in action, Thursday as they travel to Mid Peninsula.