Balanced Spartans roll

Balanced Spartans roll

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Balanced Spartans roll

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SOLON

After two decades of coaching at Solon, coach Brad Randall knows when he’s got a good team.

The one that beat Mount Vernon 64-38 on Tuesday might be.

“We’re close to being a good team,” Randall said. “We’re not real good right now, but we’re close to being good.”

Two signatures of Solon basketball showed up Tuesday — smothering defense and balanced scoring.

Solon held Mount Vernon to 21 points through three quarters, squeezing them with a variety of defensive sets.

“We worked on staying low, staying in our stances, and of course boxing out and getting rebounds,” Solon senior Joe Weeks said.

Solon won the rebounding battle 38 to 16, with Weeks leading the Spartans with eight boards. Ryan Kunkel had six.

“One thing that helped us, they had good looks, and they missed shots,” Randall said of the Mustangs. “At least we didn’t give them a second shot very often.”

Solon built up a 13-2 lead right out of the gate. Weeks had eight points in that first burst. He remembered the two losses to the Mustangs last season.

“It is a rivalry game,” Weeks said. “So it was fun.”

Solon led 32-13 at halftime and 51-21 after three quarters. The Mustang reserves ended the game on a 7-0 run to tighten the final margin.

Sixteen Spartans played. Weeks led the team with 16 points. Rory Siddell had 11 points.

Emilio Villagrana and Austin M. Miller each had eight points, and Kunkel and Ethan Ahern each added seven points.

“That’s one of our trademarks,” Randall said. “A balanced team is a tough team to play against. We are balanced and have some kids contributing off the bench.”

Solon (7-2) opened the season ranked in Class 3A but stumbled a few times before winter break and are trying to fight the way through a tough WaMaC schedule.

That’s why Randall worked on defense over the break.

“We’ve expanded our defensive repertoire,” Randall said. “We are making progress.

“If we get our perimeter shooting and free throw shooting to come along, we’ll be a tough team to beat.”

MOUNT VERNON (38) – Conner Shaffer 3-9 1-1 7, Tommy Hook 3-4 0-0 8, Connor Hermann 1-4 2-2 4, Marshall Tuerler 0-4 0-0 0, Calvin Kragenbrink 1-4 1-2 3, Jake Muller 1-1 0-0 2, Jake Pisarik 0-1 0-0 0, Andy Decamp 3-5 0-0 9, Drake Kroeger 0-0 0-0 0, Jake Leopold 2-2 0-0 5, Lukas Lengwin 0-3 0-0 0, Kaiser Arndt 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 14-37 4-5 38.

SOLON (64) – Emilio Villagrana 3-8 1-2 8, Rory Siddell 4-6 1-2 11, Austin M. Miller 4-6 0-1 8, Joe Weeks 6-12 3-4 16, Ryan Kunkel 3-4 1-1 7, Ethan Ahern 3-4 1-1 7, Nick Shelman 0-1 0-0 0, Austin D. Miller 3-4 0-0 6, Todd Oberthien 0-0 0-0 0, Dalton Ferguson 0-0 0-0 0, Nathan Hawkins 0-2 0-0 0, Jaden Durr 1-4 0-0 2, Kale Lindner 0-0 0-0 0, Shay Croy 1-2 0-0 2, Trent Brown 0-0 0-0 0, Jacob Black 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 28-54 7-11 64.

Mt. Vernon 5 8 8 17 38
Solon 13 19 19 13 64

3-point goals – MV 6-15 (Shaffer 0-4, Hook 2-2, Tuerler 0-3, Decamp 3-4, Leopold 1-1, Lengwin 0-1), Solon 4-14 (Villagrana 1-4, Siddell 2-2, Austin M. Miller 0-2, Weeks 1-2, Ahern 0-1, Shelman 0-1, Austin D. Miller 0-1, Durr 0-1). Rebounds – Mt. Vernon 16 (Shaffer 4, Hermann 4), Solon 38 (Weeks 8, Kunkel 6). Turnovers – Mt. Vernon 20, Solon 14. Total fouls – Mt. Vernon 9, Solon 7.

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