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North Muskegon goes to 21-0, clinches outright WMC Rivers boys basketball title

Division 3 second-ranked Norsemen pull away from visiting Hart for 71-47 win.

Photos by CJ Bennett for CatchMark

Some opponents have kept it close with North Muskegon’s boys basketball team. One opponent (Montague) had the Norsemen dead to rights.

But each time, the Norse find a way to win, often in blowout fashion. Twenty-one victories in 21 outings. One more win to go for a perfect regular season.

North Muskegon remained unblemished and clinched the outright West Michigan Conference Rivers Division title with a 71-47 victory over Hart Friday night in the Norsemen’s old barn.

With a victory Monday night at Holton, the Division 3 second-ranked Norse (11-0 WMC Rivers) will complete a 22-0 season. Last year, it was Hart capping a 22-0 regular season at Holton.

“We jumped to an early lead but Hart battled back. They hit a shot at the buzzer of halftime to get the lead down to eight (34-26). They hit the first two baskets in the third and we had a three-point game,” North Muskegon coach Chuck Rypstra said. “From there, we went on a 19-3 run and took back control. The fourth quarter was pretty even, but we had enough lead to finish it out.”

North Muskegon sophomore Adam Dugener poses for a portrait on Friday, Jan. 19, 2024. (Scott DeCamp | CatchMark)

North Muskegon sophomore Adam Dugener continued his big season with a game-high 26 points and four assists.

What makes this Norse team so tough, however, is their balance. That continued against Hart.

Senior Lamarkis Graham had 13 points and four assists, senior Jaxon Lisinski 12 points and three assists, and junior TJ Byard 10 points and four assists. Junior James Young added five points, nine rebounds, and seven assists for the Norsemen.

For Hart (10-10, 7-3 WMC Rivers), Blake Weirich scored a team-high 18 points and Avery Guikema had six.

“North Muskegon continued their winning ways. Credit goes to their side on another win,” Hart coach Nick Bronsema said. “Hart looks to conitinue their effort while they learn to defend with intention. North Muskegon has a bevy of guys that can put the ball in the hole and they certainly make you pay for missed rotations or overplaying them defensively.”

Lead writer for CatchMark SportsNet and Web Services leader for CatchMark Technologies.

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