MUSKEGON – The Muskegon boys basketball team is known for lighting up the scoreboard, but the Big Reds can play some pretty great defense, as well.
That was obvious on Tuesday in Muskegon’s remarkably easy 83-42 home victory over Grand Rapids Union.
“It’s right up there,” said Big Red coach Keith Guy about how his team’s defensive ability compares to that of teams from the past, including the 2014 state championship squad. “We’ve had some really good defensive squads. But they’re right up there with the championship squad and those 2016 and 2017 teams. We’re a really good defensive team that is really long and athletic.”
Perhaps Muskegon’s most impressive quarter on Tuesday was the first, when the Big Reds limited Grand Rapids Union to just four points while forcing six turnovers.
Muskegon led 18-4 after one quarter, with junior forward Stanley Cunningham leading the way with seven points.
Jordan Briggs led the offense in the second quarter with 10 points and the Big Reds had a 35-15 lead at halftime. Briggs finished the game with 18 points.
“Let’s be serious about the Mr. Basketball conversation,” Guy said about Briggs’ candidacy for the prestigious statewide award. “I’ve seen many Mr. Basketballs and I think I got two legit candidates in him and Anthony Sydnor. They both got it. I want to put that out there.”
Briggs again showcased his offensive game in the third quarter, scoring seven more points and helping the Big Reds extend the lead to 59-29 heading into the fourth.
Nine different Muskegon players scored in the final eight minutes as the Big Reds improved their perfect record to 9-0 overall and 4-0 in O-K Green conference play.
Junior Terrance Davis was the second-leading scorer for Muskegon with 16 points.
While the Big Reds forced 19 turnovers on the night, Guy believes his squad still has more potential on the defensive end.
“We’re getting there,” the coach said. “But we still have a way to go. We haven’t played with a full squad yet. But you’re getting a glimpse of what we can do when we’re whole and when we’re healthy.”
Briggs has the same mindset about his team.
“We always have room to improve,” the senior standout said. “We go over new things in practice every day and we talk about weaknesses. We watch film and we always have room to improve. We’re playing well but we can always get better.”