Weir High holds off rival Brooke, 62-51
WEIRTON — Weir High won its fifth game in a row, beating arch-rival Brooke, 62-51, inside the Carl Hamill Fieldhouse.
But, it wasn’t easy, especially in the first half.
Brooke, winners of only one game thus far this season, played an inspired first half but couldn’t keep up the hot shooting, mainly because Red Rider coach Mike Granato took advantage of his depth, kept the pressure on the entire second half and wore the Bruins down.
It was a rugged game with a technical foul called against Weir High and, a little bit later, a double technical, as the two teams battled hard physically.
“Brooke shot the ball exceptionally well in the first half,” said Granato, whose club now is 7-3. “We knew that could happen. They are a dangerous team. Everyone knows (Brooke head coach) Mel Coleman and I are good friends, and he has taken that group of kids and they have really, really improved.
“We knew they were going to shoot the 3. We prepared for them to shoot the 3, but we didn’t do a good enough job early on getting out to contest the 3. Perhaps even more than that, at halftime we had them for 12 second-chance points. Once we started boxing out and rebounding in the second half, that’s when the lead extended.”
The Red Riders out rebounded the Bruins, 39-20.
The Bruins took command early with a 21-14 lead after the first eight minutes thanks to sophomore center Alex Isinghood’s 10 points.
The Red Riders took the lead for good with 2:15 on the second-quarter clock when senior Elijah Gillette got a pretty feed from fellow senior Brodie McUmar and sank a layup. The Riders were able to extend the lead to 35-31 at the intermission.
“The game of basketball is not won in two quarters. It is four quarters long,” said Coleman, who is in his second year at the helm of the Bruins. “The second half we didn’t score very many points. We just don’t have enough depth. We have trouble giving some of our guys a rest when we’re playing against the kind of pressure Weir High put on. We take time outs to do that but, they (Weir High) wore us down because they played many people.”
Granato used all 12 players he had dressed, and nine of them got in the scoring column.
“I thought we did an excellent job of getting into their shooters’ legs,” Granato said. “As the game went on, we kind of wore them down a little bit. We’re fortunate that we have that kind of depth, and particularly because we are playing a game again (today). We go to North Marion, which is the No. 3 AA team in the state. We were able to keep some of those guys out and keep their legs as fresh as we could.”
Sophomore Tyler Kelly was the only Red Rider in double figures with 10 points, including two 3-pointers. Gillette and senior Tanner Mikula each scored nine points, and Sebastian Spencer checked in with eight.
Isinghood finished with 16 points to lead all scorers, and he had a double-double with 11 rebounds. Nick Brown came off the bench to score 10 points for the Bruins.
Brooke, which now has a 1-12 record, also is scheduled to play on back-to-back days, as it travels today to play Harrison Central.
≤ The Weir High reserves made it a sweep with a 53-43 win in the preliminary game. Jayson Nosko led the Pony Riders with 12 points, and Ryan Knox also scored 12 for the Bruin jayvees.
≤ Granato said his Red Riders today will be going against a North Marion front line that stands 6-feet-6, 6-feet-5 and 6-feet 4.
Weir High 62, Brooke 51
Brooke 21-10-8-12 — 51
Weir High 14-21-14-13 — 62
BROOKE (1-12): Anderson 3 0-0 8; Brown 3 2-2 10; Buchmelter 1 0-0 3; Isinghood 8 0-0 16; Sperlazza 0 4-6 4; Lilly 2 3-6 7; Silver 0 0-0 0; Coursin 0 1-2 1; McCombs 1 0-0 2. TOTALS: 18 10-16 51. 3-POINT GOALS: 5 (Anderson 2, Brown 2, Buchmelter). REBOUNDS: 20 (Isinghood 11). TURNOVERS: 11.
WEIR HIGH (7-3): Spencer 2 4-4 8; McUmar 2 0-0 5; Gillette 4 1-5 9; Cross 2 1-2 6; Curtis 2 0-0 5; Nosko 1 2-2 4; Kelly 4 0-0 10; Nutter 2 2-2 6; Mikula 4 0-0 9. TOTALS: 23 10-15 62. 3-POINT GOALS: 6 (Kelly 2, McUmar, Cross, Curtis, Mikula). REBOUNDS: 39 (Gillette 6, Mikula 6). TURNOVERS: 15.