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Jets speed past Rockets

Justin St. Ours | Daily Press North Central’s Ava Eichhorn (32) drives for a layup against Rapid River’s Emily Goodacre (behind) and Zeta Keys (25) Thursday at Rapid River.

RAPID RIVER — Both Rapid River and North Central entered Thursday night’s game 1-0 after winning their season openers, and only one team could remain unbeaten. The Jets sped past the Rockets 60-38 in a Skyline Central Conference contest at Rapid River.

After a relatively even first quarter that ended 10-7 in the Jets’ favor, an explosive second gave them a large cushion.

“It took a little while because we rushed some stuff at the beginning,” Jets’ coach Lee Vincent said. “We should’ve made a few more layups and stuff like that. We pulled it together.”

A jumper from Andie Arsenault just 40 seconds into the second started an 18-5 North Central scoring run that lasted until there was just 1:50 left in the half. Rapid River’s Cecilia Pilon scored four points in the last minute and a half, including a shot after a breakaway steal.

The Jets (2-0, 2-0 SCC) led 32-17 at halftime.

Justin St. Ours | Daily Press Rapid River’s Natalie Belanger grabs a rebound in front of North Central’s Nevaeh Hundsrucker (12) Thursday at Rapid River.

“(North Central) played pretty intense,” Rockets’ coach Scott Goodacre said. “They’re fast, and they’re very good at handling the ball.

“I was really happy with my bench when they went in. I took all my starters out after about six minutes and gave them three off. I was very, very happy with their performance.”

It was more of the same in the third as North Central racked up a 9-2 run, including seven from Arsenault in the first 3 1/2 minutes.

Trailing 41-19, Rapid River’s Natalie Belanger hit a jumper from the post. The Rockets then took advantage of the free throw line over the next two minutes, going 4 for 6 to reduce their deficit to 41-25.

The Jets picked back up with Bree Arsenault sinking a 3 and a free throw, followed by a layup from Ava Eichhorn that made it 47-25 as the quarter ended.

“We live by (defense),” Vincent said. “We play tough and keep after them steady, so we have to be in shape. It’s nice to have nine girls that can all play. Those players went in and scored points. We have to be in it together and let everyone get a break now and then.

“We just played well on defense. Offensive-wise we didn’t do bad. Everybody played, and they played well.”

The Jets pulled ahead 56-25 two minutes into the fourth. Despite back-to-back triples from Cami Chaperon and a 13-4 run, the Rockets (1-1, 1-1 SCC) couldn’t overcome their large deficit.

“There’ll be another day,” Goodacre said. “I thought we were a little sluggish. We tried to take it a little easy at practice yesterday, but I think they’re still a little worn out from Tuesday (at Mid Peninsula). That was kind of a bout on its own.”

Andie Arsenault led the Jets with 20 points, five steals and one triple. Bree Arsenault followed with 11 points and two treys.

Kristin Goodacre led the Rockets with nine points.

North Central, which won the jayvee game 39-9, hosts Mid Peninsula Tuesday. Rapid River travels to Norway Tuesday.

North Central 10 22 15 13 — 60

Rapid River 7 10 8 13 — 38

North Central — A. Arsenault 20, B. Arsenault 11, Fleetwood 8, Neville 8, Webber 5, Eichhorn 4, Hundsrucker 2, Pavlat 2. FT: 2-9; F: 10; Fouled out: None. 3-point field goals: B. Arsenault 2, A. Arsenault 1, Webber 1.

Rapid River — K. Goodacre 9, Pilon 8, Chaperon 6, E. Goodacre 5, Belanger 5, Keys 2, Poore 2, Paulin 1. FT: 4-6; F: 12; Fouled out: None. 3-point field goals: Chaperon 2, K. Goodacre 1, E. Goodacre 1.

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