Lyndhurst, OH- The #7 St. Ignatius Wildcats (14-6) traveled to the east side Thursday night to face the #21 Brush Arcs (9-9) in game one of a back to back for the Wildcats. The Wildcats were coming off big wins against St, Ed's, Buchtel and senate league runner up Glenville.
The matchup featured a battle of the bigs between Wildcat junior forward Reece Robinson and senior Arc forward Tyler Williams.
St. Ignatius started the game looking like a team with a lot to prove. After started the season off somewhat shakey, Coach Cam Joyce's team turned around the season just as tournament time approached. 6'9 sophomore forward Damon Friery sparked the team with 6 points in the paint, while junior guard Jack Zapolnik added two triples, including a buzzer beater half court shot to give the team a commanding 18-11 first quarter lead.
St. Ignatius kept the pressure on the Arcs into the second quarter. The Wildcats picked up a technical foul early in the quarter as junior wing Mike Lamirand was penalized for using foul lauguage while talking to him himself, which stunned Coach Joyce. The Arcs fought back early, taking advantage of the free throw line via the lopsided 8-3 team foul count to cut their deficit to within single digits. Junior guards Sean Martin and Ace Buckner scored back to back buckets before the halftime buzzer to give the Wildcats a 35-23 lead.
The Wildcats jumped out to an 17 point lead early in the quarter, before Williams made a 3 point play to keep the Arcs alive. Lamirand followed with a triple for the Wildcats to push the lead back to 14. Ignatius finished the quarter on a 11-5 run, taking a 20 point lead at 56-36 into the final quarter.
Brush junior guard Kaleb Burge fought to the end, scoring 10 fourth quarter points to attempt to stop the bleeding for the Arcs. The Arcs scored 22 fourth quarter points and were barely outscored by the Wildcats by a slim margin of 2. Ignatius kept their late quarter lead around the 17-20 point mark before Williams fouled out for the Arcs. Coach Chet Mason would soon pull his starters with 3 minutes left in the game, essentially waving the white flag. Both benches would combine for 20 points in the last three minutes as the Wildcats would claim the 80-59 blowout victory.
St Ignatius: Friery-15 points, Lamirand-14 points, Robinson-11 points, J. Zapolnik-10 points, Szczepaniak- 9 points, Buckner- 6 points
Brush: Burge-20 points, Williams- 18 points, Bush- 6 points
The Wildcats are back in action tomorrow in game two of their back to back with a home game against Start High School from Toledo. The Arcs are on the road against St. Vincent- St. Mary at the LeBron James Arena in Akron.
Brought to you by Medina Auto Mall