Chieftains put 91 points on scoreboard in victory
DOWAGIAC — Veteran Dowagiac coach Danum Hunt has been waiting for his team to put it all together.
The Chieftains may have done just that Tuesday night as it routed visiting Allegan in a Wolverine Conference non-divisional boys basketball game 91-43.
Dowagiac did a little bit of everything in winning its fourth consecutive game and its sixth out of the last seven.
The Chieftains’ defense forced numerous Tiger turnovers, which led to easy Dowagiac baskets. But the defensive also allowed Dowagiac to get into a flow that led to a better rhythm at the offensive end.
Despite Allegan holding the height advantage, the Chieftains crashed the board and limited the number of second chances for the Tigers.
In the first half, senior Andrew McIntosh sparked Dowagiac with his best offensive performance of the season.
The often overlooked 5-foot-10 guard scored 17 of his 19 points in the opening 16 minutes of play, including 11 in the second quarter when Dowagiac poured in 31 points to take a 51-25 lead on Allegan.
“We did not play down to our opponent, which is what we usually do,” McIntosh said. “I felt like I was in a good rhythm.”
In the second half, junior D.J. Lanier took over on the offensive end as he scored 16 of his game-high 26 points.
“I have a few guys who have the ability to score in bunches — D.J., McIntosh, Stanback, Brooks and Brookins,” Hunt said. On any night, anyone of those guys can do that. Tonight, it was McIntosh and D.J. who were able to get off and we picked up a big win.”
Hunt also knows that McIntosh is not always the focus of the opponent’s game plan.
“He is the guy who often gets overlooked mainly because of a season-ending injury, so they did not see much of him last year. But he is one of those guys, who goes out and hustles on the defensive end,” he said. “Once he gets going on the offensive end it is hard to stop him.”
Dowagiac also spread the ball around well and finished with four players in double figures, including Dashawn Brookins with 14 and Shaquan Stanback with 11.
On the night, every player that took the floor for the Chieftains scored at least one basket.
“I think we got off to a good start tonight,” Hunt said. “As we got after it offensively, we got on a roll. We have talked about defensive intensity since we have gotten back from the ‘snow break,’ and the guys are starting to buy into it. I think it is the right time as we get ready to roll toward the tournament.”
Dowagiac’s defense improved in the second half as it limited the Tigers to nine points in both the third and fourth quarters.
Caleb DeKryger had 20 points to lead Allegan, which also got 11 points from C.J. Chenard.
The Chieftains travel to Vicksburg for a key Wolverine Conference South Division contest. It will be a doubleheader with the girls game to begin at 5:45 p.m. and the boys game to follow at approximately 7:15 p.m.