ELYRIA — Had it not been for the second quarter, Elyria Catholic just might have been able to pull it off against highly ranked and talented Cleveland Central Catholic on Saturday night at the Coliseum.
But the second quarter certainly counted and that’s where the Ironmen took control to beat the Panthers 77-58 in non-conference action. With the loss, EC fell to 4-6 on the year.
CCC (9-2) outscored the Panthers 28-15 in the decisive quarter. Runs of five and 11 points put the Ironmen in front 28-16 with 3:25 left in the first half. EC never really recovered.
“It was a good first quarter, first quarter and a half,” EC coach Phil Kuchta said. “I thought our guys started out doing some good things and even though we were turning the ball over, we were still finding a way to keep them off-balance. Give Central a lot of credit. The Jackson twins play really, really hard.”
A little too much Delshawn Jackson was the key for the Ironmen. Delshawn, whose twin brother Dyshawn also started, scored 32 points for CCC on 13-of-19 shooting from the field and 3-of-3 at the foul line.
“We’re really pretty balanced,” CCC coach Jordan Duke said. “We don’t really have a go-to guy. He just had a good night. (Friday night) he had zero. (Saturday) he had 32.”
Both teams had back-to-back games on the weekend. EC lost a heartbreaker to Bay on Friday while CCC defeated Villa Angela-St. Joseph, 76-63.
“We had a tough one (Friday),” Duke said. “We knew this would be a grinder (Saturday). I’m just proud they stuck to the game plan and pulled away a little bit and made it a little more comfortable.”
Dorian Crutcher led the Panthers with 16 points and Edward Wright added 11. Donovan Warfield, in just his second game back from a broken wrist, provided a defensive spark for EC, which committed 11 first-half turnovers and shot just 34 percent from the field.
Kuchta shook up his lineup and rotation and got some good play from a couple of sophomores. Connor Trockley started and quickly made his presence felt with a 3-pointer that gave EC the early lead. Nate Damron, who finished with eight points and five rebounds, came off the bench and provided a spark with his hustle and rebounding.
“My hustle paid off,” Damron said. “We could have stayed in the game a little better.”
Kuchta may have found some needed depth purely by accident. He made some changes due to some disciplinary reasons.
“We had a little internal adversity,” Kuchta said. “We had to make some lineup changes. I thought Nate Damron played really, really hard. I thought he showed a lot of energy. He battled and competed.
“Connor Trockley started the game. We told him about five minutes before the game he was going to start. I thought he did a really nice job and looked like he belonged out there.”
Contact Tim Gebhardt at 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cleveland Central Catholic 77, Elyria Catholic 58
CENTRAL CATHOLIC (77): Delshawn Jackson 13-3-32, Jerry Coleman 3-4-10, Anthony Billips 2-1-6, Dyshawn Jackson 1-5-7, Dwight Love 3-1-7, Ronald Jenkins 1-0-2, Jaden Williams 0-0-0, Taryl Davis 3-1-7, Trevon Wells 0-2-2, Rayshawn Ford 0-0-0, Deshaun Nettles 2-0-4, Quinton Stephens 0-0-0. Totals 28-17-77.
ELYRIA CATHOLIC (58): Donovan Warfield 2-0-4, Dorian Crutcher 7-0-16, David Griffin 0-0-0, Connor Trockley 2-0-5, Branson Taylor 0-2-2, Edward Wright 2-6-11, Jarred Logan 0-2-2, Spencer Barhorst 0-1-1, Nate Damron 3-2-8, Brendan Holley 1-1-3, Jack Griffin 0-1-1, Jake Przybylski 2-0-5, Luke Constantino 0-0-0. Totals 19-15-58.
CCC 12 28 19 18 — 77
Elyria Catholic 13 15 13 17 — 58
Three-point goals: Central Catholic 4-12 (Del Jackson 3, Billips), Elyria Catholic 5-19 (Crutcher 2, Trockley, Wright, Przybylski). Field goals: Central Catholic 28-52 (54 percent), Elyria Catholic 19-56 (34 percent). Free throws: Central Catholic 17-24 (71 percent), Elyria Catholic 15-21 (71 percent). Rebounds: Central Catholic 33 (Coleman 7), Elyria Catholic 33 (Logan 7). Turnovers: Central Catholic 12, Elyria Catholic 18. Total fouls: Central Catholic 16, Elyria Catholic 23. Technical foul: Central Catholic bench 2, Dyshawn Jackson. Fouled out: Damron.
Junior varsity: Cleveland Central Catholic, 49-39.