By ADAM NIEMI
Iron Mountain Daily News Sports Editor

KINGSFORD, Mich. — Menominee ignited with a big run to start the second half and beat Kingsford 52-42 in a Great Northern Conference girls basketball game Monday.

The Maroons (11-6) started the third quarter with a 16-2 run to grab control after holding a narrow one-point halftime lead.

“I told them at halftime we needed to get some separation. I thought we were moving the ball very well offensively, we just weren’t taking those shots in the middle,” Menominee head coach Lucas Chouinard said. “We had some opportunities there. Second half, right out of the gate, I thought we took those shots that were inside the paint or just outside a little bit and we were able to cash in. Defensively we went to man-to-man. That was the best stretch of man-to-man we’ve had in a six-minute stretch. Very proud of them.”

Emma Anderson led the Maroons with 16 points. Erin Barrette and Jenna Nolde had 15 and 10 points, respectively.

Kingsford battled through the first half, tipping Menominee’s passes and forcing turnovers to stay on the Maroons’ heels. But the Flivvers never found a way to overcome their own turnovers and shooting struggles with misses from in close and long range.

“The first half I thought defensively we were playing pretty well. We missed a lot of bunnies,” Kingsford head coach Lisa Harry said. “Once again that really hurts us offensively. The shots were there, we just weren’t finishing.”

Brooke Kriegl led Kingsford with 17 points. Ali Doolittle had seven points and Olivia Allen had six.

Chouinard said there was a defensive focus to limit Kriegl’s drives to the hoop, which found more success after halftime.

“They didn’t let Kriegl get to the lane like she did in that first half,” he said. “Then we had great backside help on their post players. That stretch of six minutes we were able to get that separation because of good team defense and we were able to hit our shots.”

Kingsford made it a 10-point game about midway through the fourth.

Harry said Menominee’s run sapped her team’s spirit.

“We lost energy in the middle of the third and you try and do anything you can to get it back,” she said. “Sometimes it’s very difficult when they’re hanging their heads a little bit and trying to get a spark from someone.”

Harry said she liked her team’s willingness to fight to the end. Kriegl collected a few steals at the end, scoring the final seven points before Menominee dribbled out the clock.

“I’m happy about the way we battled to the end. But the third quarter really hurt us,” Harry said. “They were up by one at halftime and we went in down by 11. They hit some big shots too. Some of their girls stepped out and hit some three’s. Those three’s add up fast and they are also momentum killers.”

Kingsford visits Iron Mountain on Friday. Menominee visits Crandon on Thursday.