The halls at Two Harbors High School were empty Thursday, July 18, but the gym echoed with the familiar sounds of basketball.

The boys team was playing a doubleheader against Cook County and McGregor as their summer league winds down at the end of July.

The Agates have been playing consistently over the past six weeks as part of their summer program, which included a weekend camp July 12-14 at St. Cloud State University. Both the varsity and junior varsity teams went to the camp.

The team struggled against larger schools like Fargo South, but were competitive against similarly sized schools like Goodhue and Kingsland, according to Two Harbors Coach Bill Anderson.

Two Harbors sophomore Jarred Hiukka drives to the basket during an Agate win over McGregor Thursday, July 18. (Jamey Malcomb/News-Chronicle)
Two Harbors sophomore Jarred Hiukka drives to the basket during an Agate win over McGregor Thursday, July 18. (Jamey Malcomb/News-Chronicle)

Anderson said Goodhue and Kingsland are working with Two Harbors to set up a time for both teams to come to the North Shore next summer for some games.

The focus this summer for the Agates, however, has been installing a new defense focused on full court pressure. Anderson said the defense is a “work in progress,” but he’s confident it will be effective when the season rolls around this winter.

“We have a long ways to go, but it’s coming,” he said.

The new defense even started to pay dividends in the doubleheader when Two Harbors forced late turnovers against Cook County and McGregor to secure a 38-36 win over the Vikings and a 42-41 win over the Mercuries.