The Kirtland mens basketball team scored its first win since Mark Vick took over as the Firebirds’ head coach, succeeding Ty McGregor, beating visiting Schoolcraft College, 91-86, on Saturday, Jan. 25.
“While it has been a challenge for both me and the players with the mid-season transition, it has taken some time for me to get to know the players strengths and for them to understand what I am expecting of them,” said Vick, a Houghton Lake alumnus. “I am extremely excited to get our first win since the coaching change.
“We have been making positive strides over the past weeks and I’m glad that it finally showed on the scoreboard.”
Kirtland (5-10 overall, 1-6 conference) jumped out to a 43-28 lead at halftime of the Michigan Community College Athletic Association clash with Schoolcraft (10-8 overall, 3-5 conference).
“We had some great performances by two of our leaders – Colin Craven and Jeremiah Williams,” Vick said. “In addition, each player who stepped on the floor was able to contribute to this win.”
Williams (Traverse City West) led the Firebirds with 24 points, 4 rebounds, 1 steal and 1 blocked shot, while Craven (Germany) chipped in 19 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals and 1 blocked shot. Michah Thomey (Mio) added 15 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal in the win.
“Schoolcraft made a late surge to close the margin from 19 in the first half,” the head coach added. “We struggled a little in handling their late pressure but, in the end, the clock was our friend and we were able to survive.”
Other contributors for Kirtland included: Bryan Layton (Alcona) with 13 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 blocked shots; Bryan Layton (Alcona) with 13 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 blocked shots; Jack Ocobock (Kingsley) 11 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 1 steal; Reece Koepke (Bellaire) with 5 points, 1 rebound and 2 assists; Zane Tobin (Grayling) with 3 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 blocked shot; Lasse Steinort (Ludwig-Frank) with 1 point, 2 assists and 1 blocked shot; and Ivan Vulovic (Belgrade) with 3 rebounds.
For more information on Kirtland athletics, visit online at www.kirtland.edu/firebird-athletics.
– Report courtesy Buckland News Service.