Bloomington Kennedy defeated the Cambridge-Isanti boys’ basketball team 66-53 on Dec. 7. On Dec. 11, the Jackets chalked up their first victory with a convincing 74-56 win over Irondale.
Bloomington Kennedy had too much speed and quickness for the Jackets. The end result was C-I’s third setback of the young season, 66-53.
The first half was a bummer for the Bluejackets. C-I could muster only four of 22 field goal attempts. Nate Cox sank three 3-pointers as Kennedy raced to a 27-15 lead at halftime.
C-I made some adjustments at intermission and were equal to the talented Eagles in the second half. Kyle McDonald swished 3, Cox and Matt Swanson one 3-pointer each, to keep the Jackets within a 10-point distance of Kennedy. The closest C-I could get to Bloomington was 60-51 late in game, but the Eagles had the last say by taking a 66-53 victory.
“I was happy with our play in the second half,” said coach Mike McDonald. “Both our offense and defense were much better. Offensively, we were more aggressive, that helped us sink 12 of 24 shots. We are taking baby steps toward improving.”
Kyle McDonald led C-I’s scoring with 20 points. Cox came through with 12 and Matt Swanson 9 points.
Overall, the Jackets finished by downing 16 of 51 shots for 31 percent.
Swanson had nine and Cox eight rebounds, while Hunter Vavra and Aaron Allen each had three assists.
A strong second-half 42-point scoring surge did the trick as the Jackets chalked up their first victory of the young season.
“I’m happy for the guys,” said coach McDonald. “They have made great strides to get the win. We hope they will continue to improve.”
C-I started well by getting early leads, but seemed to tire late in the first half with Irondale leading 35-34.
The Jackets scored the first 2 points in the second half and from then never trailed.
C-I’s major weapon that broke the game open was hitting their 3-pointers. Cox drained five and Jake Johnson four long shots. Overall, the Bluejackets canned 11 threes.
Once one of the players started to hit 3-pointers, everyone gained confidence and the scoring thrived. In the end, C-I earned a well-deserved 74-56 triumph.
A number of Bluejackets stepped up their scoring talents in the game. Cox came through with 21 points, followed by Johnson’s 18, McDonald’s 13 and Vavra’s 10-point efforts.
C-I will host Spring Lake Park on Dec. 14 and travel to Princeton on Dec.18.
Bloomington Kennedy 27 39-66
Bluejackets 15 38-53
Scoring: McDonald 20, Cox 12, Swanson 9, Allen 5, Vavra 4, Johnson 3
Bluejackets 34 40-74
Irondale 35 21-56
Scoring: Cox 21, Johnson 18, McDonald 13, Vavra 10, Swanson 5, Allen 3, Banks 2, Douglass 2