Big fourth quarter lifts Copper Kings boys to win

CALUMET — The Calumet Copper Kings and the Bessemer Speedboys boys basketball teams struggled to score Monday when the teams clashed on the CLK school’s hardwood; the Copper Kings eked out a 35-34 win.

“We still have jitters and are still trying to figure out rotations,” said Copper Kings coach Frank Bonacorsi. “This was our second game, and we are still just figuring out who works well with each other.”

Calumet overcame a third quarter in which they only scored three points, and they managed to crawl back from a seven-point fourth-quarter deficit for the win.

“They did a great job of being more aggressive in the fourth quarter,” Bonacorsi said. “They were dribbling and looking for the penetration instead of just moving around. Then we were aggressive with our press, giving us a few steals to push the game back in our favor.”

Despite the loss, Bessemer coach Richard Matrella felt his team fought hard and didn’t give up.

“We are young, but I liked how we responded to Calumet’s physical play. They responded well to the fact that we kept it to a one-point game,” he added. “I think it was nine to two in the first quarter, and we got down by four or five there in the fourth quarter, but we kept coming back.”

Gavin Sturos led the Kings with 13 points, and Blake Tarvis chipped in with eight.

Conner Johnson’s nine points led the Speedboys. Tommy Trudgeon and C.J. Wainio helped with six points each.

Calumet fed off the band’s energy in the first frame. The home team had a 9-2 lead at the start of the second.

The Speedboys outscored the Copper Kings 10-7 in the second but still trailed entering halftime, 16-12.

Bessemer played with their hair on fire out of the break, holding Calumet to just three third-quarter points while scoring 11 for a 23-19 lead.

Minutes into the fourth, the Copper Kings fell behind by seven; however, the group in grey and blue found their scoring touch and finished the game on a 16-8 run to win.


Calumet will play in Jeffers on Thursday, Dec. 7, with the JV starting at 5:45 p.m.

Bessemer will host Watersmeet on Thursday at 7 p.m.


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