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Thursday July 2, 2020
ONE MORE POINT! Wolves' Upset Try Falls Short

NEGAUNEE---The Carney-Nadeau High School boys basketball team rallied from 14 points down to take a late lead, but ended up losing to the Dollar Bay Blue Bolts, 65-64, in the Class D regional final Wednesday in Negaunee.

The Wolves came just inches away from pulling a major upset, but the undefeated Blue Bolts, ranked second in the state in Class D, escaped for a second straight game.

Beau Koffman's three-point attempt from the top of the key was long off the back of the rim with 0.8 seconds to play, ending the Wolves' impressive post-season run.

Dollar Bay also won a nailbiter in the regional semifinal, 63-60, over Rapid River, on Monday. The Bolts will face Cedarville in the state quarterfinal next Tuesday.

Early on, the Blue Bolts were as dominant as their 24-0 record indicates, racing to a double digit lead, 22-8, early in the second quarter. But the Wolves clawed their way back to within seven, 38-31, at halftime, on a Jason Kirschner put-back at the buzzer.

In the second half, Carney-Nadeau seniors Jake Kleiman and Preston Lauscher took over, and it took everything the Blue Bolts had to hold them off.

Lauscher had a steal and a sweet driving layup early in the third quarter, and then scored again on a put-back with 2:23 left in the quarter, making it a 47-41 deficit.

Kleiman, meanwhile, scored on a step-back jumper on the baseline, and on a spinning drive into the paint. But Carney still trailed, 52-47, entering the fourth quarter.

A Kleiman jump shot gave the Wolves a 53-52 lead with 7:15 left in the game, and it was back-and-forth all the way to the final second.

Dollar Bay's top player, Devin Schmitz, nailed a triple, and Jacob Iacono and Jaden Janke were both tough on the glass for the Bolts. Janke's basket in the paint put the Blue Bolts ahead, 65-62, but Kleiman scored on a drive to the hole to cut it to one with 1:52 left in the game.

Nobody would score in the final 1:52, but there was lots of action.

The Blue Bolts got the benefit of a time-out call that the Wolves disputed, but moments later, a high pass out of bounds gave the Wolves the ball with 32.8 seconds to play.

Wolves Coach Jacob Polfus decided not to call a time out. Instead, Kleiman ran a play inside, got double teamed, and kicked it out to Kaufman for the triple try. It was long off the back of the rim. The Bolts inbounded, and survived another test.

Four players scored all 65 of Dollar Bay's points. Janke had 23, Schmitz 20, Iacono 12, and Brenden LeClaire added ten points.

The Wolves (16-8) got 18 points from both Kleiman and Lauscher. Kirschner added ten points and Brett LaFord contributed nine points.

Dollar Bay plays Cedarville in the quarterfinal in Escanaba Tuesday night at 7:00. The winner advances to the Final Four at MSU.

Click the thumbnails in the ARTICLE HIGHLIGHTS box above to see photos and videos, and hear interviews with Polfus and Kleiman.

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