Negaunee, MI – March 25, 2021 – The Negaunee Miners Boys Basketball team defeated the Kingsford Flivvers 56-48 to advance to the 2021 district championship game. Jesse Anderson had the call on Sunny 101.9.
The first quarter displayed how evenly matched these teams were. There were 11 lead changes during this quarter alone. The Miners were led in scoring by Eli Luokkala with six. For Kingsford, Brody Kopp was able to get six himself. Although, the Miners were able to get some momentum with a buzzer-beating shot by Will Luke that gave Negaunee a 13-12 lead at the end of the first.
The Miners were able to end the stalemate early on, as two straight threes by Gerald Johnson put Negaunee up by five. After a few more buckets were scored by both teams, the Miners had a setback. Starting forward Eli Luokkala was forced to the bench with three fouls midway through the quarter. Nonetheless, the team still performed well. The Miners finished the quarter with seven unanswered points to give Negaunee a solid 28-19 lead at halftime.
The Flivvers started to make some plays, and they began to get back into it. Their full-court trap forced a few turnovers, and allowed them to go on a 6-0 run. This made it a two possession game early in the third. For the Miners, their defense was able to stop Kingsford from taking back the lead. Meanwhile, they got a few more baskets from Luokkala despite his foul trouble. Negaunee had a 38-32 lead going into the fourth.
The fourth quarter started off in the same back-and-forth fashion. Kingsford got the game to within four points, but Negaunee was slowly figuring out how to beat the Kingsford press. The Miner trio of Luokkala, Johnson, and Luke all found the bottom of the net in the later part of the final quarter. At the same time, Kingsford went cold from the field. Negaunee expanded their lead late and won 56-48 to move on to the district Championship. Both the Negaunee girls’ and boys’ teams will play in district championship games on consecutive days. The girls will play on Friday night, and the boys’ game is on Saturday in the afternoon.
NEXT GAME: Saturday, March 27th, at 1pm in Negaunee for the 2021 district championship. Tune in at 12:45 for the Elder Agency Pregame Show with Jesse Anderson on Sunny 101.9.