by Don DiFrancesco
BRUNSWICK, OHIO– In a Monday night matchup of top teams from the Greater Cleveland Conference, Brunswick, currently rated No. 4 by Cleveland.com, hosted No. 1 Solon. The near-capacity crowd was treated to a close game for three quarters. But Solon controlled the boards and the ball for most of the fourth quarter and came away with a 75-61 victory.
In the first half, both teams gave each other problems on defense. Brunswick had 13 turnovers, Solon had eight. The Blue Devils’ Alex Wyatt had the hot hand early, scoring nine points in the first quarter. But the Comets responded with balanced scoring and held a 24-16 lead midway through the second period.
A 3-pointer by Kyle Goessler brought Brunswick back to life, sparking the Blue Devils to an 11-3 run. Nick Felician scored on a layup with 1:44 remaining in the half giving Brunswick a brief 25-24 lead. Solon’s Nick Close knocked down a 3-pointer with 0:30 to play putting Solon back in front, but Felician scored on another layup just before the halftime buzzer to tie the game at 27.
Goessler really got it going in the third quarter with 10 points including two 3-pointers. But that was also the quarter where Solon’s leading scorer, Sincere Carry, stepped up his play with 10 points of his own and several smart passes. The Brunswick “Devils Den” cheering section was all over Carry, booing him whenever he touched the ball. But the 6-foot senior guard didn’t seem to be rattled at all.
The shots weren’t dropping for Solon’s Mike Bekelja on this night, but he scored his only basket on a nifty baseline move to give Solon a 50-47 lead heading to the final period.
As if answering a stage direction, it was “enter, stage right” for Solon’s Trent Williams. He scored 15 fourth-quarter points including three long range bombs from the right corner as the Comets took command of the game. When David Marbury controlled a loose ball and scored with one minute to play, Solon had their largest lead of the night at 71-55 on the way to a 75-61 win.
For the Comets (16-0), Williams was the leading scorer with 27 points, followed closely by Carry with 26. Solon has two more road games this week, traveling to 5th-ranked Stow on Tuesday followed by another trip west to Medina on Friday.
Brunswick (15-3) had three double-digit scorers in the game: Goessler with 22 points, Felician with 19, and Wyatt with 11. The Blue Devils will try to regroup in time for a visit by 20th-ranked Mentor on Friday night.