Swanton Shoots Down Comets to Open Sectional Tournament

The Swanton Bulldogs used deadly accurate outside shooting and heavy defensive pressure to take down the Genoa Comets 52-36 in the first round of the OHSAA Sectional Tournament played on Swanton’s home floor. Three seniors, Andrew Thorton, Josh Vance and Trent Weigel, took the court in the Kevin J. McQuade Gymnasium for the final time in their Bulldog basketball careers and did not disappoint the home crowd as they raced out to an early comfortable lead and cruised to a solid victory.

It took almost three minutes for either team to score until Thornton found the bottom of the net from long range to give the Bulldogs a 3-0 lead.  The Comets put in a lay-up to pull within one point but they would never come that close again for the rest of the contest.  A jumper from Vance, a steal and lay-up by Mitchey and short bank shot by Thornton propelled Swanton to a 10-0 run to close out the first quarter with a 13-2 advantage.

Genoa’s offense came alive in the second quarter and they were able to match Swanton’s scoring but could not significantly close the gap.   Skyler Jo drained a three-pointer to open the period and Jacob Emerson scored nine of his team-high 16 points, but two treys by Thornton and one by Vance kept the Comets at bay as they could only shave one point off their deficit and trailed 28-18 at halftime.

The Bulldogs essentially put the game away in the third quarter by opening with a 10-2 run.  Hayden Callicotte hit a short jumper from the baseline to start the spurt and Thornton swished his fourth shot from behind the arc and added a lay-up to give Swanton a 38-20 lead with 5:17 remaining in the third.  The quarter ended with a 17-point margin, 40-23, for the home team.

With approximately four minutes remaining in the game, Swanton had extended it’s lead to 21 points at 49-28 and Coach Joel Visser began to empty his bench.  Genoa was able to convert twice from deep late in the game to push the final score to 52-36.

Statistically, Thornton led all scorers with 21 points and Vance added 16.  Callicotte, Mitchey and Weigel each had four points for Swanton.  In addition to Emerson’s 16 points, Jo had eight for the Comets.  The win sends the Bulldogs to Ottawa Hills on Friday to take on the Green Bears for the Sectional title with a 7:00 pm start time.

Pictured:  Cole Mitchey drives the lane for a short shot.

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