Bluejackets shoot past Irondale for ‘W’

The Cambridge-Isanti boys marked in the win column with a solid team effort to down visiting Irondale 74-56 in a Dec. 11 non-conference game.

Bluejacket sophomore Nate Cox battled Bloomington Kennedy’s Jumah’ri Turner for a rebound during the Saturday matinee game at CIHS. Cox hit four three-pointers for 12 points in the 66-53 game, then he led C-I with 21 points in the win over Irondale Dec. 11. Photos by Greg Hunt

“Defensively, we made some big stops to slow the Knights in the second half. But mainly we just shot the ball well. We made 14-of-20 three-pointers for the game, with Nate Cox and Jake Johnson leading the way from the perimeter,” described C-I Coach Mike McDonald.

Four Bluejackets scored in double figures against Irondale: Cox 21, Johnson 19, Kyle McDonald 13 and Hunter Vavra 10. Matt Swanson added 5 points and Aaron Allen 3. Cox drained three three-pointers in the second half, and Johnson popped for two ‘3s’ in the half which saw C-I outscore the visitors 40-21. McDonald found his way for six two-point field goals, and Vavra worked well inside to get to the line.

Bloomington Kennedy 66, Bluejackets 53

Starting their home stretch on Saturday, the Bluejackets faced off against a long and athletic Kennedy squad. Senior guard Jumah’ri Turner scored 16 of the Eagles’ first 17 points and led all scorers with 34 points in the road victory.

C-I senior Aaron Allen got off a three-point attempt against the Eagle defense. Allen finished with 5 points and 4 rebounds on Saturday.

The Bluejackets (1-3) began slowly on the offense end until Cox nailed a couple three-pointers to counter Turner’s output. Kennedy flashed a quick-covering zone while slowed the Jackets for a stretch when the lead grew to 25-8.

With under four minutes to play, the C-I boys began returning pressure on Kennedy and forced four straight turnovers to cut it to 27-15 at the break.

C-I regrouped to play the Eagles even at 39-38 in the second half as they shot 53 percent from the arc and 7-of-8 at the line in those 16 minutes.

“Offensively, we played a whole lot better in the second half.  Matt Swanson had all of his 9 points in that half, and Kyle McDonald scored 18 of his 20 (hitting four ‘3s’) in the second half. We had the game down to single digits with momentum, but a couple of steals by the Eagles sealed it for them,” commented C-I Coach Mike McDonald.

Cox finished with 12 points, and Allen scored 5. Swanson and Cox also led on the boards with 9 and 8 rebounds.

The Bluejackets’ homestand continues with a Dec. 14 game against Spring Lake Park, then they travel to Princeton for a non-conference rival game on Dec. 18.