Pine River basketball team hopes to post another conference-title winning season

LEROY  — Pine River will be bidding for the same type of success it had last season when the boys basketball Bucks went undefeated in winning their conference title.

It appears the pieces are there to make a run for another championship season but it depends on how everything falls together.

The Bucks were in a home scrimmage Saturday against Maple City Glen Lake and Baldwin.

“I was real pleased with how we played,” Pine River coach Brian Goodenow said. “We got to see very fast, athletic teams. Glen Lake has great size, actually both teams have good post players. I thought we handled them very well. I was pleased with our defensive effort.”

The scrimmages led into a schedule that opened Tuesday of this week at Harrison. The home opener is Thursday with Traverse City Christian, followed by a home game Monday with Chippewa Hills before the Bucks will head into the holiday break. The Highland Conference season starts Jan. 6 at Manton.

“We are pretty deep and lots of guys can come off the bench and make solid contributions right away,” Goodenow said. “Senior leadership is really good.”

Lucas Harris, Greg Park and Mitchell McDonald are among the players who will be key leaders for the Bucks.

“Greg has been shooting the ball really well, that’s a key for us,” Goodenow said. “He’s another legitimate scoring threat for us. Greg is also a good rebounder. He really gets up when he sets his mind to it.”

Goodenow is confident his team can do OK on the boards.

“Despite our lack of size, if we execute like we’re supposed to, I think we can hold our own,” he said.

Goodenow was expecting a tough test at Harrison and isn’t quite sure what to expect from TC Christian.

“TC Christian is also kind of a wild card,” Goodenow said. “I know they graduated a lot of guys from last year. You never know who moves in.”

There’s only three games for the Bucks prior to the holiday break.

“I kind of wish we could have gotten a fourth one in prior to the break,” Goodenow said. “But scheduling can be awfully hard.”