Written by J. Patrick Eaken
Lake boys basketball coach Jim Scharer is preparing to face the Genoa Comets two more times, and in succession.
The Flyers close the regular season by hosting Genoa Friday, Feb. 26, and then have the honor of playing Genoa again in both team’s Division III sectional tournament opener at Whitmer Mar. 2 (8 p.m.). Scharer calls it a “doubleheader.”
Genoa was the fourth seed, and the Comets had three options during the draw.
“We either had to play Otsego to play Delta, or we could have gone to the bye, or we could have went to the open line, which we did,” Genoa coach Jeff Overmyer said.
How will Scharer prepare for the Comets, especially when playing two games in a row? They already met once, with Genoa taking a 57-51 victory on the Comet’s floor Jan. 22.
(Senior point guard Matt) Bassitt killed us the last game,” Scharer said. “He had 21 and hit five three’s, He played really, really well. We were down three with 32 seconds to go at their place. We just haven’t been able to finish games. Our shots are too short. You know, we were down two to Eastwood with six seconds to go at Eastwood (47-44 Eagle victory).
“We’re going to honestly prepare for them in two different ways. I always try to give the opponent something different the second time around, but when you play them the third time that quickly, sometimes it might be a little bit difficult,” Scharer said.
“But we won’t show anything that we are going to put in that Friday night for the tournament. Obviously, if there is a choice between the two games, the tournament game is more important.”
Lake is 3-14 overall and 1-9 in the Suburban Lakes League with two games to play before facing Genoa the first time. The Flyers have lost nine straight and are hoping to get a win against Eastwood (played Feb. 19) or in a non-league make-up game hosting Fostoria St. Wendelin Feb. 23.
“We’ve been through a really rough stretch. We’ve played about seven games in a row on the road and against five quality basketball teams. We played well in three of those games,” Scharer said.
Meanwhile, Genoa defeated Otsego 52-42 on Feb. 11 to give the Knights their second league loss and put Eastwood (12-5, 9-1) in the driver’s seat in the SLL.
“After our tough loss at Elmwood (60-44, Feb.2), our last three games we’ve continued to improve. We had a real big win at Otsego. We’re building some momentum here as we wrap up the regular season and head toward the tournament,” Overmyer said.
Genoa is now 11-6 and 6-4 with games remaining at Gibsonburg (Feb. 19) and hosting Clyde (Feb. 22) before facing Lake the next time.
Last Tuesday, the Comets came from nine points down, putting together a 17-0 run through the second and third quarters to defeat Woodmore (4-13, 1-10) 73-62.
“We took a little better care of the basketball, and we were able to finish shots that we missed inside in the first quarter. Defensively, we were much better in the second quarter during that run than we were the first quarter when Woodmore shot the ball fairly well,” Overmyer said.
Senior Jon Lester had a double-double, scoring 29 points and grabbing 15 rebounds in the win over the Wildcats, senior Richard Wonnell had 15 points and 11 rebounds, and senior point guard Matt Bassitt had 13 points and nine assists.
Suddenly, the 6-3 Lester is coming into his own, often outscoring and out rebounding the 6-9 Wonnell.
“I’ve always thought Lester was a better basketball player,” Scharer said. “Wonnell is just an imposing defensive figure He really is — he makes you change your shots and stuff that if you need to get inside him, you have to shoot the ball a little bit, and it’s tough sometimes.
“We’ve got a kid that is 6-7 (senior Alex Cordell), and he gives Wonnell a little bit of trouble. He’s not nearly as physical or as strong, but at least he has a hand up there. He blocked a couple of his shots last game.”
Overmyer says to never overestimate Lake, especially when facing them twice in a row.
“They are a team that’s improved throughout the season, and it’s the coach’s second year in the program. Their kids understand now what the expectations of a program are. Their program has some stability and that stability is going to lead to some success,” Overmyer said.
“It’s going to happen eventually. They are still recovering from all the levy problems where kids kept leaving on them. So, I mean a lot of the problems that they had over there were created by themselves because the voters didn’t want to back them. Now, they are starting to get things going in the other direction, and that’s good for them to get some positive energy.”
Do you feel comfortable drinking water coming from the city of Toledo
No answer selected. Please try again.
Thank you for your vote.