By RON DEUTER
KINGSFORD -Elisa Jurmu nearly matched the entire Flivver lineup with 27 points, leading Houghton's girls to a 63-35 victory over Kingsford Friday in a non-conference matchup of U.P. Class ABC No. 2 versus No. 5.
Ron Deuter/The Daily News Photo
Kingsford’s Carlee Benzie (11) swipes the ball away from Houghton’s Ashlyn Kero during the fourth quarter of Friday night’s non-conference game. Courtney Qualley (in back) also applied pressure on the play.
"It's Houghton," Flivvers coach Mike Cross said. "You know they're going to push the ball up the court. You know they're going to work the ball inside.
"The Jurmu girl just does an outstanding job of running the court, and then when she does get the ball in the post, she really knows what to do with it."
A one-point game after the first quarter, Houghton started to gain some distance in the second frame.
"Early on in the game they pressured us into four or five bad turnovers," Houghton coach Julie Filpus said. "That combined with missing some easy shots led to a first quarter we weren't super pleased with.
"But in the second quarter we were able to get some separation. In the third when they came at us with some heavy pressure, I think our ball handling really allowed us to push the ball down the floor and get some easy layups to balloon the lead."
Kingsford was led by Carlee Benzie and Amber Larson with nine points apiece. Benzie also pulled down a team-high seven rebounds and had seven steals.
"They just play a fundamental, solid man-to-man defense," Cross said. "They didn't press us. They do a great job helping each other. They are just an outstanding defensive team."
Jurmu was one of five Gremlins to sink triples on the Flivvers. Sydney Dillinger, Kelsie Richards and Alexa Johnson all totaled seven points and were among those to make good from beyond the arc.
Jurmu also pulled down seven boards.
"She's athletic and competitive," Filpus said. "We wanted to come out and really have a solid game tonight, and her leadership gets everyone to the next level of intensity."
Filpus credited her guards with exploiting the Flivver pressure in the second half.
"They really made some nice passes and took the wind out of their sails," she said. "This was a great test. Kingsford does have great pressure, and early on, we did have to figure it out."
Houghton improved to 12-1. Kingsford slipped to 8-3.
Kingsford won both the jayvee (54-21) and freshmen (45-33) contests.
Kingsford plays at West Iron County Monday.
Houghton12 15 14 22 - 63
Kingsford11 8 9 7 - 35
HOUGHTON: Jurmu 27, Dillinger 7, Richards 7, Johnson 7, Datto 5, Laux 4, Polakowski 2, Zenner 2, Kero 2. FT: 6-10. F: 17.
KINGSFORD: Benzie 9, Larson 9, Qualley 7, Roell 4, Tresedder 4, Bennett 2. FT: 11-22. F: 11.
FG shooting - H: Not available; K: 12-60. 3-pt FGs - H: Johnson, Datto, Richards, Jurmu, Dillinger; K: None. Rebounding - H: 37 (Polakowski, Jurmu 7); K: 25 (Benzie 7).