KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE Elyria High School's MarSaun Robinson (2) looks to make a shot as Medina High School's Dylan Fultz (10) guards him on Friday night, December 15.
KRISTIN BAUER Enlarge
ELYRIA — Slowly but surely, Elyria coach Brett Larrick is bringing his young and relatively inexperienced team along.
The Pioneers fell behind early Friday but once they grabbed the lead, they managed to keep it, downing Medina 68-60 in Greater Cleveland Conference play. The Pioneers (3-1, 1-1 GCC) outscored the Bees 21-11 in the second quarter.
“Me and Chris (Hassinger, Medina’s coach) talked beforehand,” Larrick said. “We’re kind of both in the same boat. We lost a lot (of seniors) from last year and we’re trying to learn each other. It was definitely a good win that we needed.”
After losing to Solon by 25 points last Friday, Larrick knew this was a key game for his team. Medina jumped in front 11-5 behind four baskets from 6-foot-7 Tyler Kaminski, but Elyria closed out the quarter on a 5-0 run and pulled away in the second quarter.
With freshman point guard MarSaun Robinson hitting some key 3-pointers and senior Roman Carter adding some big baskets, Larrick has to be feeling pretty good about how his team is rounding into shape. Seniors Justin Koepp and Deviian Williams each spiced up the offensive attack as well.
“Medina came out more aggressive than us,” Robinson said. “Coach told us to get after it.”
“We didn’t want to lose,” Carter said. “We had to come out strong. Solon was a hard game for us. We had to bounce back and get a win.”
Kaminski, who finished with 17 points and three rebounds, and Koepp, who is also 6-7, battled for most of the night. Koepp had 15 points and five rebounds — and the better supporting cast. Elyria had just four turnovers.
The Pioneers had four players in double figures led by Robinson and Carter with 18 points each. Williams chipped in 15 and seven rebounds.
“I thought our guys gave a really good effort,” Larrick said. “We challenged them to play hard and I thought they did that.”
Robinson belied his youth by hitting some really big shots in the key second quarter. He scored seven of his points in the quarter, one a 3-pointer with 2:17 left in the half to put Elyria up 27-20.
Carter came up with eight big points in the third quarter and hit a huge floater along the baseline in the fourth to put Elyria in front 51-42 with 5:37 to play.
Elyria put the game on ice by making 11 of 14 from the foul line in the fourth quarter when the Bees were forced to foul. Williams was 5-of-6 and Koepp 3-of-4.
“We were trying to foul,” Kaminski said. “We had to get the ball back and get quick buckets. They’re a great team. They have great players. We just have to work out the kinks.”
Medina got good games from Colin Szumski (16 points) and Drew Hassinger, who hit four of his five 3-point attempts.
“That’s the best — except for the one year we had (Jon) Teske — our kids have competed at Elyria,” Hassinger said. “I was pleased with the effort and the intensity. We came out with a lot of pop, which we’ve been struggling with at times this season. I was pleased with the start but we shot ourselves in the foot with a bunch of turnovers in the middle.”
Contact Tim Gebhardt at 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Elyria 68, Medina 60
MEDINA (60): Kyle Szumski 2-1-6, Dylan Fultz 3-3-9, Colin Szumski 5-4-16, Dylan O’Dear 0-0-0, Tyler Kaminski 5-6-17, Friedrick Dillon 0-0-0, Drew Hassinger 4-0-12, Corey Tripp 0-0-0, Curie Brandon 0-0-0, Brandon Geschke 0-0-0.
ELYRIA (68): MarSaun Robinson 7-1-18, Deviian Williams 4-7-15, Roman Carter 6-2-18, Will Waddell 0-0-0, Justin Koepp 6-3-15, Caleb Rogers 0-0-0, Izaiah Thomas 0-0-0, Josiah Grantham 1-0-2, Josh Ball 0-0-0. Totals 24-13-68.
Medina 11 11 14 24 — 60
Elyria 10 21 16 21 — 68
Three-point goals: Medina 8-18 (Hassinger 4, C.Szumski 2, K.Szumski, Kaminski. Elyria 7-15 (Carter 4, Robinson 3). Field goals: Medina 19-38 (50 percent), Elyria 24-51 (47 percent). Free throws: Medina 14-18 (77 percent), Elyria 13-18 (72 percent). Rebounds: Medina 21 (Fultz 8), Elyria 29 (Williams 7). Turnovers: Medina 10, Elyria 4. Fouls: Medina 17, Elyria 15.
Junior varsity: Medina, 55-33