Reed City boys bounce back against Big Rapids

Reed City's Chaz Davis tries to block Big Rapids' LJ Graves from the basket in Friday action. (Herald Review photo/John Raffel)

Reed City's Chaz Davis tries to block Big Rapids' LJ Graves from the basket in Friday action. (Herald Review photo/John Raffel)

BIG RAPIDS -- What a difference three days make.

Three days after suffering a tough 50-48 loss to Chippewa Hills on Tuesday, Reed City (2-3, 2-6) stormed back on Friday with a dramatic 55-52 win over Big Rapids (2-3, 3-4) in CSAA Gold boys basketball.

"We were really beat us as far as sickness and we haven't had a full practice since Tuesday," Reed City coach Jesse Kailing. "Three of the guys back tonight, this is their first day back in school. Tonight, we put a game plan in and talked about what we had to do and the kids did it to perfection."

The Coyotes gained early leads and were up by five at halftime, forcing Big Rapids to play catchup most of the way.

"I thought they played very well and we made a ton of mistakes," Big Rapids coach Kent Ingles said. "They outhustled us. We just weren't there."

Zac Saez scored 17 points with three triples while Canyon Reed had 12, Payton Hansen had nine and Landen Tomaski had six.

Woodard had 15 points including four threes for Big Rapids while Jamal Strickland had 11.

Keaton Ballard nine and Camden Clark had eight.

Woodard started connecting on triples and Big Rapids tied it 15-15. Hansen hit a three to help Reed City come back for 26-17 lead.

Woodard netted another triple late in the half, but Reed City was up 28-23.

Two Hansen free throws gave Reed City a 39-27 bulge midway in the third. Camden Clark had a 3-point play for Big Rapids, which trailed 39-34 going into the fourth.

"The key for us came in the third quarter," Ingles said "We got three straight stops but threw the ball away within half a second."

Reed City had a 3-point play to open the fourth for Reed City for a 42-34 lead. Reed City kept trying to pull away and Big Rapids hung tough. Reed City had a putback for a 49-45 advantage.

The Coyotes were up 53-47 but Strickland's triple got his team back in the game 53-50. With time running down, Big Rapids was called for an intentional foul, Saez hit two free throws and the Coyotes were able to put the game away.

"Our defense was the key big time," Reed said. "We've had a rough start this season, but this game will boost our confidence and get us going."

"After we played as poorly as we did against Chip Hills the other night, that might have been a wakeup call," Kailing said. "They realized how hard you have to work to win."

Reed City is home with on Friday with Newaygo.