BEREA — St. Edward lived up to its billing as the top boys basketball team in Northeast Ohio on Sunday afternoon.
Playing their third game in 42 hours, the Eagles gutted out a 52-41 victory over Brunswick in the annual Scholastic Play By Play Classic at Baldwin Wallace University.
All 15 members of St. Edward’s squad played at least 6 minutes, but senior center Kelvin Calhoun stood tallest at 6-foot-7 with 10 points on 5-of-5 shooting with three assists.
“He has a pretty good skill set and he can really move for his size,” said Blue Devils shooting guard Kyle Goessler, who scored a game-high 27 points on 6-of-13 3-pointers. “He’s also a pretty good defender, and they do a nice job getting him the ball where he wants it.”
Calhoun displayed a soft touch from the baseline and strong post moves for the Eagles (9-2), who held Brunswick scoreless for the final 6½ minutes of the first half. Calhoun and 6-6 junior center William Henry each sank two buckets in the 15-0 run that gave St. Edward a 28-13 lead.
The Blue Devils made just 5-of-23 field goal attempts in the first half, but Goessler and senior point guard Kevin Simmons caught fire after intermission. They made all five of their 3-point tries in the third to pull Brunswick within 41-32.
“When they’re playing well, I truly believe they’re two of the best guards in the area,” Blue Devils coach Joe Mackey said. “Kyle did what he does best, which is get open and make shots, and Keith came back strong after really struggling in the first half.”
Brunswick twice got as close as seven points in the fourth, both on Goessler baskets, before Calhoun fed Emmett Chambers for a short jumper that extended the Eagles’ advantage to 47-38 with 2:48 left.
St. Edward, which didn’t make a free throw in the first 29:58, salted away the victory as senior guard Thomas Schmock went 5-of-6 from the line at crunch time.
Simmons finished with 10 points and four assists, while junior small forward Nick Felician had two points, a team-high six rebounds, three assists and three steals.
The Blue Devils’ starting backcourt went 11-of-25 from the field, but the rest of the squad was just 2-of-15 and misfired on all 10 of its 3-pointers.
“Our rough start was the difference in the game,” Mackey lamented. “We were getting any looks we wanted, but just weren’t cashing them in. We had our opportunities, for sure.”
The coach was especially unhappy that Brunswick didn’t take advantage of the Eagles’ starting lineup, which included their usual benchwarmers, none of whom played over the final three periods.
“Last year, we won 21 games and made it to regionals; this year, a team starts its third string against us,” Mackey said. “I like Eric (Flannery, St. Edward coach), and I have a lot of respect for him. My kid even plays AAU for him. But we can use what he did as motivation for a long time. That should fuel our guys for a while, right into the tournament.”
- BW men’s basketball assistant Brian Schmidt — a longtime member of Mackey’s staff — was in attendance. Also supporting the squad were former Brunswick assistants Tom Harrington, Keith Sooy and Chris Cebula.
- Yellow Jackets women’s basketball assistant Cassie Seth also was at the game. The former Parma and Highland coach joined the program this winter.
St. Edward 52, Brunswick 41
Scholastic Play By Play Classic
BRUNSWICK 8 5 19 9 — 41
ST. EDWARD 10 18 13 11 — 52
Brunswick — Nick Felician 1-0-2, Cam Sasala 0-0-0, Zak Zografos 1-0-2, Kyle Goessler 8-5-27, Keith Simmons 3-1-10, Blake Pirie 0-0-0, Cameron Pettry 0-0-0, Xavier Diaz 0-0-0, Trevor Mackey 0-0-0. TOTALS: 13-6-41.
St. Edward — Devan Morrow 0-0-0, Elliott Tirbaso 1-0-2, Patrick Daugherty 1-0-2, John Manno 1-0-3, Richard White 0-0-0, Patrick Flannery 0-0-0, William Henry 3-0-6, Montorie Foster 2-0-5, Michael Dowell 0-0-0, Kelvin Calhoun 5-0-10, Demetrius Terry 1-0-3, Jack Sullivan 1-0-3, Thomas Schmock 3-5-12, Grant Huffman 0-0-0, Emmett Chambers 3-0-6. TOTALS: 21-5-52.
3-point goals — Goessler 6, Simmons 3, Manno, Foster, Sullivan, Schmock, Terry. Rebounds — Brunswick 20 (Felician 6), St. Edward 29 (Sullivan 5). Assists — Brunswick 10 (Simmons 4), St. Edward 16 (Sullivan 4). Records — Brunswick (7-5), St. Edward (9-2).