Scoring from Finch, Morrell leads Trojans past Allegan
Entering the season, the senior duo of forward Evan Finch and Luke Morrell were expected to lead the offensive charge for the Plainwell boys’ basketball.
The pair certainly lived up to those expectations during the Trojans’ Wolverine Conference showdown with Allegan on Friday, Jan. 5.
Finch and Morrell came within two points of matching the offensive production of the Tigers as they combined for 40 points in propelling their team to the 59-42 victory.
Finch finished with a game-topping 22 points, while Morrell checked in with 18 points.
Plainwell coach Dan Klein realizes what a luxury it is to have two players on his roster as talented as Finch and Morrell.
“Both of those guys bring so much to the table,” Klein said. “Luke is very explosive and is very tough to stop when he attacks the rim like he was tonight. And Evan is so smooth. It’s a big weapon when your big man is also the best shooter on the floor and that’s what we have in Evan.”
Finch opened the game’s scoring by splitting a pair of free throws in the game’s opening minute to give Plainwell the quick 1-0 lead. But the next five points belonged to Allegan, culminating with a basket from Landon Mielke.
Four straight free throws from Morrell knotted the score at 5-5 before a 3-pointer gave the lead back to Allegan.
“Give Allegan a lot of credit,” Klein said. “(First-year Allegan coach) Jeff (Turner) has his kids playing very hard. Hats off to them for getting after it right from the start.”
Plainwell responded with two free throws and a basket from Finch to make it 9-8 in favor of the Trojans, who took a 12-11 lead at the end of the first quarter.
An 8-0 scoring run to open the second stanza increased that lead to 20-12. Plainwell didn’t trail the rest of the way, holding leads of 28-18 at halftime and 47-32 after three quarters of action.
“We played well,” Klein said.
And while Finch and Morrell did the bulk of the scoring for Plainwell, Klein was quick to point out the contributions of junior point guard Isaac Davis.
“Isaac gave us another great floor game out there tonight,” Klein said. “He deserves a lot of credit. He’s been our glue all year.”
Ryan Topp chipped in with seven points in the win.
For Allegan, Caleb DeKryger led the way with 15 points.
“Caleb DeKryger is a terrific player for them,” Klein said. “And the thing is he’s only a junior, so I’d expect him to just keep getting better.”
Zeke Turner checked in with 12 points in the losing cause.
As a team, the Tigers were held to less than 30 percent shooting from the field.
“We struggled with our shooting tonight,” Jeff Turner said. “That makes it tough to win. We were also outrebounded and gave up too many second-chance points as a result.”
Alex Babbitt led Allegan with six rebounds.