Erickson grabs 20 rebounds Bucks win over MCC

REBOUND WIN: Pine River’s Devin Ruppert drives to the basket against Mason County Central. (Herald Review photo/John Raffel)
REBOUND WIN: Pine River’s Devin Ruppert drives to the basket against Mason County Central. (Herald Review photo/John Raffel)

LEROY — Lincoln Erickson only had four rebounds in his last game for Pine River and the Bucks’ post player was determined to get more Monday night against Mason Country Central.

How about 20 rebounds?

That’s how many boards Erickson grabbed, along with 13 points, in helping the Bucks hold back MCC 71-60 in nonleague action.

Tyler Lewis led the Bucks with six 3-pointers and 21 total points.

The 20 rebounds is a season high.

Erickson was held to four boards in Friday’s 61-51 loss to McBain.

“My coach told me to rebound so I went out there and rebounded,” Erickson said. “It’s how bad I wanted it. We played more as a team (Monday). We made the extra passes. That’s what this team is built off of. We were more of ourselves.”

The Bucks, 11-2, took a 39-32 lead into halftime and got another triple from Lewis in the third quarter to stay ahead of the pesky Spartans 53-43, going into the fourth.

The Bucks netted 13 of their points in the fourth quarter on free throws. Lewis hit a triple to put his team ahead 58-45. The visitors hung tough and cut it to 65-60 late in the game, but couldn’t hit key shots and allowed the Bucks to put it away at the free-throw line.

“We played really well in spurts,” said Pine River coach Brian Goodenow. “Late in the game, we got a little sloppy with the ball. With their pressure defense, we turned it over too many times and let them back in. We’re not being careful with the basketball.”

Lewis drilled in four triples and Brandon Hoaglund had one in a first quarter which ended with the Bucks up 23-15.

“Tyler ignited us early on with those threes. Tyler played well for us offensively,” Goodenow said. “Lincoln really controlled the boards.”

Lucas Harris scored six points from off the bench to help the Bucks gain their nine-point halftime lead.

“I think getting early deficits, down by 12, was hard a hole to dig out of,” said MCC coach Jeff Tuka. “You could tell we fought hard all night long. Even when we got it down to five, you expend so much energy to climb out of a hole that you can’t climb out of it.”

Kody Ambrose led MCC with 18 points and netted four 3-pointers. The Spartans fell to 8-4.

Devin Ruppert had seven assists.

Mitchell McDonald sat out the game with an illness.

Pine River is at McBain Northern Michigan Christian on Thursday.