Senior hoopsters roll to another win

The Muskie senior boys’ basketball team improved their NorWOSSA leading record to 3-0 with a dominating 57-33 win over the visiting Kenora Broncos yesterday afternoon.
The black-and-gold continued right where they had left off before the Christmas break, jumping out to commanding 16-4 lead in the first quarter.
Kenora managed to pull to within seven–27-20–by halftime but the Muskies used an array of long, full-court passes and an inside game to blow out the Broncos in the second half.
Muskie co-coach Al McManaman felt his team could have played better at times but nonetheless was pleased with the win.
“We were a bit rusty. They outrebounded us, and were getting second and third shots, but we played strong at the end,” he said afterwards.
The Muskies once again were impressive on offence, getting double-digit scoring from three players. John Sivonen, the team’s offensive leader, finished with a game-high 18 points while Evan Woodland and Doug LaBelle each netted 14.
Jamie Algie, always strong underneath the boards, added nine points.
LaBelle, who had a particularly solid game, scored several baskets on long passes that allowed him to go up for uncontested layups. McManaman said that’s something they will be keying on down the stretch.
“We’re a high-tempo team, and other teams want to slow us down, but when we free up Doug, especially, it opens [the offence] up for us,” he remarked.
“They either have to pressure us and give up the long ball, or stay back,” he noted.
It was the completely opposite story in junior action here yesterday, with the Muskies allowing Kenora to jump out to a 33-8 halftime lead en route to an easy 59-23 win.
The juniors struggled at both ends of the floor to lose their second straight game to Kenora after opening the season with a victory over Dryden.
Dan Poperechny led the Muskies with eight points while Vern Pham netted six. Keith McKay, who scored a pair of baskets in limited action, also had a strong game.
< *c>Volleyball
Turning to girls’ volleyball, the Muskie senior squad returned to action with a sweep of the Kenora Broncos in their best-of-five match here yesterday by scores of 25-23, 25-18, and 25-12.
But head coach Rick Wiedenhoeft felt his team was lucky to win the match by such a lopsided score, stressing their passing game must improve.
“I think we had two quality hits in that first game. We were lucky to win it,” he noted, adding serving continues to be their strong suit.
“The poor passing surprises me . . . I think it may be confidence. We’re going to have to get more reps in at practice,” he stressed.
Wiedenhoeft said he was pleased with the defensive play of Sarah Vanderplaats on the weak side and Siobhan Devlin, who had a strong game both hitting and blocking, in the middle.
But like the junior hoopsters, the Muskie junior spikers also continued to struggle as they were swept by the Broncos 25-15, 25-14, and 25-15 yesterday.
All four court teams are back in NorWOSSA action next Tuesday in Dryden.