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Luke Skaljac finds Steve Skaljac for a game winner in a Suburban conference thriller 44-41

Brecksville, Ohio- Two Suburban conference foes North Royalton and Brecksville-Broadview Heights faced off. Both teams came into the matchup with win streaks. North Royalton looked to avenge their 66-50 loss to Brecksville earlier in the season. Brecksville snapped North Royalton’s six game win streak after a game winning three from Steven Skaljac to extend their win streak to nine games in a row. 

The game started out with a really slow pace for both teams offensively. Brecksville slowed down the pace a lot with their half court zone. North Royalton made it a point of emphasis to get the ball out of Luke Skaljac’s hands. They sent several double teams his way in the first. 

I got to speak with Luke Skaljic about the attention he commanded tonight.

“I haven’t seen a double team this year like that so I’m gonna get better from it and learn on it so I’m excited for it," said Skaljac.

Going into the second quarter trailing 8-6, Luke Skiljac started to heat up for the Bees. He knocked down back to back step back jumpers, one of them being a three pointer. Skaljac finished with seven points in the quarter. 

 North Royalton continued to force turnovers on defense. They also started to find buckets in the half court as well. They went into halftime tied at 19 a piece.

North Royalton came out in the third and started to gain momentum. They started to find baskets around the rim. Jad Suleiman got an and-one layup around the halfway mark. He followed it up with an alley oop finish. North Royalton led 31-27 with three minutes left going into a timeout. 

Brecksville took over the quarter from that point. Brady Ganley, Colin Seibert and Luke Skaljic scored baskets during a 9-0 run prompting a timeout. The Battling bees went into the fourth up 36-33.

The fourth quarter was a back and forth battle. North Royalton took their first lead of the quarter after buckets from Suleiman and Dylan Lakatos. The Polar Bears led 39-38 with 4:30 to go. 

Kyle Keener drove to the basket and scored a few minutes later. Will Moss immediately answered with a reverse layup of his own. North Royalton led 41-40 with a minute to go.

After those two baskets Skaljac got into the lane and found his brother Steve Skaljac for a wide open corner three. Brecksville led 43-41. After a free throw from Colin Seibert and a stop on defense Brecksville ended the game on top, 44-41. 

Jad Suleiman led all scorers with 18 points, Will Moss scored ten also. Luke Skaljac led Brecksville with 17 points, Brady Ganley added ten. 

I got to speak with coach Steve Mehalik after the win and he had high praise for his Miami (Ohio) commit Luke Skaljac.

“Luke is special and I think he’s the best player in Ohio," said Mehalk. "He had two, three guys sometimes running at him.. I’m gonna put a case in for him for Mr. Basketball for the state of Ohio because you can’t guard him.”

Brecksville will be back in action Friday February 9th at 7:30 PM at Wadsworth High School.



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