Boys basketball: Flivvers win in emotional return

ISHPEMING — A late 3-pointer by Nate Rutter helped Kingsford edge Ishpeming 70-65 in a non-conference win on Tuesday.

Down a point with 1:24 to go, Rutter hit a trey to give Kingsford (3-2) the lead for good.

It was Kingsford’s first game since the death of two Kingsford High School girls in a car accident on Sunday. Flivvers head coach Dan Olkkonen said the team dug down and played with raw emotion. The result, he said, was a “breakthrough game.”

“It was a great win for us tonight. Having the kids trying to prepare what we’re going through as a team and the community, it’s been tough but I think the kids really did something special tonight by sticking together and gutting it out down the stretch. They’re going to need the mental toughness to carry through the rest of the week at school.

“It was a real nice breakthrough for us,” Olkkonen added. “Believe me we’re going to go from this win.”

Olkkonen said the Flivvers were emotional after the game in the locker room.

“They were playing for something a little bit else tonight. It was a special time. It was real emotional after the game,” Olkkonen said. “We got in a circle and thanked everybody for the effort that they had and playing for Flivver Nation and the spirit of the girls. Everybody had tears in their eyes and it was a special game.”

Rutter finished with 16 points. Luke Terrian led Kingsford with 19 points and Tyler Beauchamp had 13.

Hart Holmgren led Ishpeming with 27 points. He was limited to nine in the second half.

“It was real tough stopping him,” Olkkonen said, adding that help defense was an issue in the first half.

Ishpeming held a 37-27 halftime lead.

Olkkonen said the Flivvers’ defense was more disciplined in the second half.

“The key here for us is every time they shot they were one and done in the second half,” he said.

Kingsford JV won 73-60 and freshmen won 60-17. Tyler Kopp led the JV with 22 points and Caleb Boone’s 34 points paced the freshmen.

Kingsford’s game Thursday against Marquette was postponed. Swimming and wrestling meets on Thursday are also postponed.

Kingsford 10 17 25 18 — 70

Ishpeming 15 22 17 9 — 65

KINGSFORD (70): Terrian 19, Rutter 16, Beauchamp 13, Gayan 12, Kreski 6, VanRemortal 2, Mann 2. FT: 7-16. F: 14.

ISHPEMING (65): Holmgren 27, Tucker 13, Sundberg 9, Darius Yohe 8, Dondre Yohe 6. FT: 8-10. F: 14 (Darius Yohe fouled out).