Pine River boys open season with two victories


LEROY —   Pine River took down Traverse City Christian on the road on Thursday in a 76-52 victory for the Bucks.

The Bucks were paced by Skyler Nelson with 17 points. Other big contributors were Mitchell McDonald with 16, Lucas Harris with 13 and Brandon Hoaglund with 11.

“I was really pleased with how we played (Thursday),” Pine River coach Brian Goodenow said. “It was an overall team effort. Guys stood up that we aren’t used to seeing, and it was good, spread out scoring.”

Pine River shot 44 percent for the game and 46 percent behind the arc.

“We had balanced scoring,” Goodenow said. “That’s the type of scoring I like to have.”

Pine River improved to 2-0 on the season going into the league opener Tuesday with Manton.

The Pine River boys basketball team started its season off with an impressive 58-37 win in the season opener on Tuesday night, Dec. 10. The Bucks held Harrison to just nine points in the entire first half after being up 17-4 at the end of the first quarter.

Things got a little closer in the third and fourth quarters, but Pine River still outscored Harrison 33-28 in the second half.

Big contributors for the Bucks were Brandon Hoaglund who had a double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds, Mitchell McDonald with another double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds and nine points from Skyler Nelson.

“We didn’t shoot the ball very well,” said Goodenow. “We ended up shooting 33 percent and 19 percent from outside the arc. It was a tough shooting night. Our defense was outstanding. That gave us a good chance to win despite not shooting well.”

Harrison was led by Michael Taylor’s 10 points and nine points from Matt Haskell on three 3-pointers.

Goodenow was expecting a stiff challenge Tuesday of this week from Manton to open the conference season.

The next game is Friday Jan. 3 vs. McBain. On New Year’s Eve, Pine River hosts a scrimmage with Glen Lake and Reed City.

Pioneer Sports Writer Greg Buckner contributed to this report.