Quick start lifts Big Rapids past Reed City

DRIVING: Big Rapids' Tyler Pellerito defends Reed City's Chad Samuels during Thursday's high school basketball action. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)
DRIVING: Big Rapids' Tyler Pellerito defends Reed City's Chad Samuels during Thursday's high school basketball action. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

BIG RAPIDS -- A quick start led to a dominating evening for the Big Rapids Cardinals on Thursday night.

The Cardinals fired out to a 10-0 first-quarter start, limited Reed City to 14 points in the first three periods and went on to a 59-36 victory in the Central State Activities Association boys basketball opener for both teams.

Quinn Tyson led the Cardinals with 21 points, which included 11-of-11 from the free-throw line.

Big Rapids was 19-for-21 from the charity stripe for the game.

“We were 5-of-13 the other night,” Big Rapids coach Kent Ingles said, referring to Monday’s win over Manistee. “(Thursday) was one of those nights.”

Eric Grannis and Derek Lodholtz came off the bench and led Reed City in scoring, both with seven points, all in the fourth quarter. The Coyotes were able to net only 13 points out of their starters.

“Their press really bothered us,” said Reed City coach Dean McGuire. “We played hard. Defensively I thought we took Big Rapids out of what they wanted to do (early in the game).”

Nick Baldwin scored two field goals to ignite his team to the 10-0 lead after the first quarter. The Coyotes didn’t score until a minute into the second quarter on a triple from Joshua Saez. Chad Samuels drove to the hoop for two to cut it to 17-10 with 3:02 to play. But the Cards outscored Reed City 12-2 for the rest of the quarter. Tyson hit a 3-pointer with 2:13 left for a 22-10 lead. Dario Williams drove for a basket at the buzzer for a 29-12 halftime advantage.

“We’re trying to play a better defense and we’ve got some quickness,” Ingles said. “The difference is we have some depth this year. We have fresh legs the whole way. We weren’t very good offensively, I felt, in the first 10 to 12 minutes of the game. I wasn’t happy with our offense. It never hurts when Q knocks a couple of down and he’s a big-time scorer. He’ll draw a lot of attention the first of the year.”

Big Rapids’ pressure defense continued to thwart the Coyotes in the third quarter. Reed City didn’t score until 3:18 was left and the Cardinals were up 35-14. Tyson’s three-pointer play gave Big Rapids a 40-14 lead late in third and he also hit another triple in the quarter which ended at 48-14.

“At the start of the season, we knew good things were going to come this year,” Tyson said. “We were going to come out and take care of business.

“They couldn’t move our press. That’s what most teams, I think, will have trouble with.”

“I thought the defense bothered them,” Ingles said. “But it’s only our first meeting. We’ll play them again. At this point we’ll take it and move on. We’re trying to sell the kids that defense will win and our defense has been pretty good the first couple of games.”

Baldwin added nine points for the Cards.

Big Rapids is 2-0 overall and Reed City is 0-2.

On Monday, Reed City is home against Morley Stanwood and Big Rapids is at Hesperia.

 View more photos from this game at our photo gallery!

BIG RAPIDS 59, REED CITY 36

Reed City 0 12 2 22 -- 36

Big Rapids 10 19 19 15 -- 59

REED CITY (0-2)

Joshua Saez 0(1) 0- 3, Jacob Vincent 1 3-4 5, Dean Eichenberg 0 0-0 0, Chad Samuels 1 0-0 2, Ryan Willis 0 3-4 3, Trevor Nelson, 2 0-0 4, Kyle Wright 0 1-2 1, Derek Lodholtz 291) 0-0 7, Rick Droke 0 0-0 0, Garrett Benson 2 0-1 4. Eric Grannis 2(1) 0-0 7. Totals 10(3) 7-11 36.

BIG RAPIDS (2-0)

Dario Williams 2 (1) 0-0 7, Jake Daugherty 0 2-2 2, Tyler Pellerito 0 2-2 2, Nick Baldwin 4 1-2 9, Quinn Tyson 2(2) 11-11 21, Mack Green 2 0-0 4, Kyle Brady 1(1) 0-0 5, Shawn Heroor 1 0-0 2, Eric Chase 1 3-4 5, Matt Brejcha 0 0-0 0, Jacob Hayes 0 0-0 0, LeeQuan Clark 0 2-2 2, Eric Boyd 0 0-0 0. Totals 14 (4)19-21 59.